Queensland is facing its biggest COVID-19 outbreak since the pandemic's first wave, with a cluster growing to 63 cases halfway through an eight-day lockdown of the state's southeast.
Seventeen new locally acquired cases of the Delta variant emerged after a record 51,479 tests in the 24 hours to 6am on Wednesday.
Fourteen new cases have been infectious in the community, with the number in a west Brisbane cluster rising to 63.
"This has become our biggest outbreak since the first wave last year," Deputy Premier Steven Miles told reporters.
Four cases are linked to the Ironside State School, two are linked to Indooroopilly State High School, one is linked to Brisbane Boys Grammar, and nine are close contacts or family members.
The other new Delta case in Cairns isn't genomically linked to Brisbane cluster.
The male reef pilot is fully vaccinated with Pfizer and is believed to have been infected by a crew member on a ship.
Almost 10,000 people are in home or hotel quarantine, and two of the new cases were not infectious in the community.
A 24-year-old woman is on the run after escaping quarantine on the Gold Coast
Police believe she broke out of the hotel by forcing open a glass door overnight, and have not been able to locate her since.
She was directed to isolate on Monday and has returned a negative test.
Chief Health Health Officer Jeannette Young said lockdown could still end at 4pm on Sunday.
The aim of the lockdown isn't to have no cases, but to suppress the amount of cases infectious in the community, she says.
"It doesn't matter (if) we've had those cases because they're in quarantine, so it won't stop us lifting the restrictions on Sunday," she said.
"So please, everyone just think of what you can do in the next few days so we can lift this and we can beat all their predictions about how long it takes to get such a large cluster under control."
Police issued 48 penalty infringement notices on Tuesday, including 34 to people for breaching lockdown without a valid reason.
Mr Miles urged people to stay home unless they absolutely need to do essential shopping or get health care.
"Five more days, do the right thing, and then next week you can buy all the sun lounges you think you need," he said.
There are now almost 200 close and casual contact COVID-19 exposure sites in southeast, central and far north Queensland, including the Hyperdome Shopping Centre in Loganholme and Stafford City Shopping Centre in Stafford which were revealed on Wednesday night.
Dr Young asked people to even delay online and "click and collect" shopping for non-essential items until lockdown lifts.
"Last year I didn't have any problems with Bunnings being open and people going and buying pot plants and doing some gardening, but that was with previous variants," she said.
"We just need to ramp it up. This is Delta, it's so much more contagious.
"For the next five days, think: 'Do I really need to leave the house?'."
Queensland's Ekka public holiday set for next Wednesday will also be postponed.
Health Minister Yvette D'Ath hopes to receive 150,000 extra AstraZeneca vaccine doses from the Commonwealth next week.
She also said the government was trying to work out what was causing vaccine hesitancy in Queensland.
"We do a lot of consumer advocacy and reach out to find out why it is that we have a vaccine hesitancy or why we're not coming forward," Ms D'Ath said.
Until recently, the state government warned people under 40 not to get AstraZeneca due to the extremely small risk of a rare blood clotting disorder, which is treatable.
Earlier this week, Dr Young changed her advice and said people who think they are at risk should talk to their GPs about getting AstraZeneca.
Australian Associated Press
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