Katherine's lockdown has been extended by 48 hours as two more people test positive to COVID-19 in the town.
Chief Minister Michael Gunner announced on Monday morning that two people in Katherine, a 33-year-old woman and a 67-year-old man, tested positive in the last 24 hours.
The woman is a parent of a student at Macfarlane Primary School which was identified as an exposure site last week.
Acting Chief Health Officer Charles Pain said because of the new cases, and their belief that there are more COVID cases in the Katherine East area, the decision was made to extend the lockdown to Wednesday evening.
"It's unlikely there are only two in this catchment," he said.
Dr Pain said although no new cases had been recorded in the nearby Aboriginal remote community of Binjari, authorities were expecting more to be recorded in coming days.
The number of cases in the most recent COVID cluster is now at 36.
Mr Gunner said authorities were still waiting for a significant number of test results from Katherine and the neighbouring communities of Binjari and Rockhole.
Both communities went into a hard lockdown on Saturday after nine people tested positive to COVID-19 in Binjari.
"There were 2517 tests processed in the Territory in the 24 hours to midnight last night. Incredibly, 1170 tests were done in Katherine yesterday. An absolutely amazing effort," he said.
In addition, 157 were done in Rockhole and 15 in Warlpiri camp.
"We don't have those test results back yet. Those results are critical. We expect to have them back later today, which will be really important for decision making".
Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker said eight residents of Binjari left the community last night and walked to Katherine. The six people in the group who were adults were each fined $5024 for breaching the Chief Health Officer's directions.
"To those people in Binjari, compliance has been really really great by the large proportion of you.
"If you need anything, please make contact with the police officers and the other government staff that are on the ground. We will facilitate whatever you need on the ground.
"The urgent message is please do not leave. You must stay within the Binjari community for the time being until we give you further notice."
A number of new exposure sites were added to the list in Katherine including;
- Woolworths: 5pm - 5.20pm, November 19
- Katherine Central Shopping Centre: 4.30 - 5.30pm, November 19
- Coles Express: 10.25 - 10.45am, November 18
- Commonwealth Bank: 11 - 11.30am, November 15
- Katherine Centrelink: 9.40 - 10.40am, November 15
- Wurli-Wurlinjang main clinic: 9.15 - 9.40am, November 15
These are all casual contact sites, meaning those who have been these must get tested for COVID-19 and remain isolated until they get a negative test result.
Commissioner Chalker said 189 people who are considered close contacts of COVID cases in the Katherine region cluster are now in Howard Springs, with more expected to be transferred in the coming days.
He said measures had been taken to ensure people in lockdown in Binjari and Rockhole, many of whom live in overcrowded houses, had power and food.
"Over the weekend, we had a non-disconnect policy in place to ensure that nobody was left without power. We understand that two homes ultimately had no power and we had Power and Water activated and it got treated," Commissioner Chalker said.
"As part of the care packages we've been providing power tokens to those that need it and will continue to work with them."
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