COVID-19 fragments detected in Benalla’s wastewater

Published on 18 November 2020

Coronavirus Graphic.jpg

Routine testing of Benalla’s wastewater has detected fragments of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Since August 2020, the Department of Health and Human Services has collected wastewater samples from across the metropolitan and regional sewer network and has found fragments in samples from many locations, including those without known cases.

According to the Department of Health and Human Services, viral fragments in wastewater does not mean recycled water or treated wastewater poses a public health risk. Wastewater is treated to kill a variety of microorganisms, including viruses, before it is returned to the environment. There is no evidence that coronavirus (COVID-19) can be spread via recycled water nor via treated wastewater released to waterways. People can shed the virus for up to eight weeks after they stop being infectious.

Mayor, Cr Danny Claridge said the risks associated with the virus being found in Benalla’s wastewater are low and that this is a good reminder that we must all remain attentive.

“The virus is part of our lives and part of our larger community,” Cr Claridge said.

“We must all continue to wear our masks, maintain our social distance, maintain our good personal hygiene and if you have any symptoms at all, get tested.”

Testing is available at:

Benalla Health
Open daily 9.30am to 6pm
Call (03) 5761 4284 for an appointment

Benalla Racecourse
Thursday 19 November 2.30pm – 6pm
Friday 20 November 8.30am – 3pm
Saturday and Sunday 8.30am – 3pm

Benalla Showgrounds
Friday 20 November 8.30am – 3pm
Saturday and Sunday 8.30am – 3pm

Call 1800 314 741 for an appointment at the Racecourse or Showgrounds, or just turn up.

UPDATE - Friday 20 November 

Benalla Health have advised that the COVID testing stations have been closed today Friday 20 November due to the heat policy.

Both testing stations will be open on Saturday and Sunday between the following times:


Showgrounds         8am to 1pm

Racecourse            8.30am to 1pm


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