There's now no doubt that Victoria is experiencing a concerning second wave of coronavirus infections that authorities seem to have no control of, and drastic action will be needed.

That's the view of Professor Adrian Esterman, a biostatistics expert and epidemiologist at the University of South Australia, who has described the situation as "almost chaotic".

It was announced today that another 191 new cases of Covid-19 have been detected in the past 24 hours, representing the state's largest daily increase since the pandemic began.

While it's impossible to predict what could happen in the short term, Professor Esterman fears things could get much worse before they get better.

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"My gut feeling? They've lost control and they need to do something fairly drastic," he said.

A woman looks out a window from a locked-down public housing tower in Melbourne. Photo / AP
A woman looks out a window from a locked-down public housing tower in Melbourne. Photo / AP

"We're seeing an almost exponential rise in new daily cases. It's becoming more and more difficult for the Victorian Government to contain it.

"I think the genie has gotten out of the bottle."

Professor Esterman said lockdown restrictions should be reintroduced in a bid to prevent further community transmission of the virus.

If numbers keep increasing, a statewide return to stage three measures might provide the only hope of preventing a public health disaster, he said.

That would allow four valid reasons to leave the house, being: shopping for food and supplies, care and care-giving, exercise, and study or work when it can't be done from home.

"And exemptions to quarantine rules should not be granted," he added.

"Testing should no longer be a choice. People in 14-day quarantine should be tested on day 11, and if they refuse, made to go into another 14 days of quarantine. Breaking quarantine should be a serious offence.

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Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews speaks to the media during a press conference in Melbourne. Photo / AP
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews speaks to the media during a press conference in Melbourne. Photo / AP

"Far better communication is needed to explain why these measures are essential, and health authorities should ensure their messaging also reaches those who do not speak English as a first language.

"People should be encouraged to wear face masks whenever outside. There is increasing evidence they are effective in areas of high transmission."

It would no doubt be painful and an unfortunate backward step for Victoria, but it could be the only thing to get on top of the second wave, he said.

The situation now is more complex than at the start of the pandemic, when the majority of cases were "imported" by travellers returning from overseas.

"The real concern is when there's increasing community transmission where the origin of the virus is unknown. That's been going up and down over the past several days.

"It makes things more challenging when it's difficult for authorities to work out where the infection has come from. If you can't do that, it means there are more cases out there."

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Police guard access to housing commission apartments under lockdown in Melbourne. Photo / AP
Police guard access to housing commission apartments under lockdown in Melbourne. Photo / AP

Coronavirus has shown itself to be an unpredictable pandemic, with a number of variables to infection that are virtually impossible to anticipate.

"The mathematical modelling is useless. It's an almost chaotic situation that's difficult to predict.

"The real question now is whether the Victoria Government can take chances or whether they'll have to do something drastic."

The resurgence has been linked to failures in the state's hotel quarantine system, with those in mandatory 14-day isolation allowed to flout rules and security guards accused of facilitating breaches and even sleeping with those in lockdown.

Large family gatherings also caused large clusters of infections, health officials have said.

Fears of community transmission have seen localised lockdowns in specific postcodes, including the total isolation of several public housing towers.

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The government also suspended the easing of social distancing measures and reintroduced some bans on non-essential gatherings.