A seven-day lockdown has been announced in Victoria, Australia, to nullify a fast-spreading outbreak in its capital, Melbourne.

The lockdown will begin at midnight on in Australia’s second most populous state, Victoria on Thursday (14:00 GMT).

While searching for a way out of the deadly situation, authorities have so far found 26 cases, and identified 150 sites where people may have been exposed to the virus.

Meanwhile, there is growing anxiety over the outbreak which reminds many locals of a devastating second wave that swept the state last year, BBC reports.

Since the development occurred, Victoria’s acting Premier James Merlino has made comments, concerning the situation.

He said the outbreak involved a highly contagious strain of the virus, the B.1.617 variant. A returned traveller was infected with the strain, which Mr Merlino said was spreading “faster than we have ever recorded”.