The Informer: C'mon 2021, enough already

C'mon 2021, enough already

Sure, an earthquake. Of course, there was an earthquake. Drought, fire, flood, pestilence, plague - yup, why not an earthquake?

The good news was that the largest quake recorded in Victoria's history, which emanated from Mansfield, toppled a few things but caused no major damage.

The quake struck at a relatively shallow depth of 10km, according to Geoscience Australia, and after being initially measured at 6.0 magnitude it was revised to 5.8, before 5.9 was settled on this afternoon.

Rumbles of a different kind were expected out of Melbourne today and although Mother Nature nabbed the spotlight, a mob of protestors ensured authorities remained on high alert.

What began as a protest against mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for the construction sector and a closure of building site tea rooms since turned into wider unrest yesterday and continued, to a lesser degree, today.

Since mid-afternoon, the protesters and police were engaged in a tense stand-off - at the Shrine of Remembrance. Police moved on the crowd just before 5pm. Reports on your preferred ACM website will keep you updated.

Earlier today Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews led the condemnation of yesterday's marchers while CFMEU Victorian construction secretary John Setka blamed "neo-Nazis and right-wing extremists" for hijacking the event.

Speaking from Washington, DC where he is meeting world leaders, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said "the protests are very concerning and that is unacceptable behaviour ... particularly at a time when those in Victoria are dealing with lockdowns and many other stresses", Nine newspapers reported.

On the domestic COVID-front, Australia's tweenagers have jumped at the chance of vaccination with almost 20 per cent of 12-15-year-olds now jabbed once; Lismore, Albury and Ballarat will be released from stay-at-home orders from midnight; and a NSW truckie who drove to WA has tested positive but, fear not, that won't affect the AFL grand final.

Meanwhile it may be the scenario that personifies the Delta outbreak in NSW - a Sydney woman who travelled to Byron Bay in northern NSW for work-related purposes, has tested COVID-positive and been charged with breaching public health orders. The head-shaking irony? She was working on the reality TV show I'm a Celebrity ... Get Me Out of Here!

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This story C'mon 2021, enough already first appeared on The Canberra Times.