Monthly losses on Horsham pokie machines are slowly returning to pre-pandemic levels, figures from the state's gaming regulator show.
The Victorian Commission for Gambling Liquor Regulation said expenditure on the Horsham Rural City Council's 153 electronic gaming machines during March 2021 was $872,419.75.
On average, a staggering $28,142.57 was lost on pokies machines in Horsham every day in March.
These figures are eerily close to March 2020, when only $557,236.73 was lost in just 16 days - $34,827.30 per day.
The coronavirus pandemic forced gambling venues around Victorian to shut their doors on March 23.
The machines laid dormant until November 8, where an eye-watering $3,592,106 was lost in just 144 days.
That is an average of $24,945.19 per day.
The worst month in Horsham was January 2021, with $910,639.82 lost, or $29,375.48 per day.
During the 2019-20 financial year, $7,232,445.14 was lost in the City of Horsham - about $27,924.50 per day.
Australian Bureau of Statistics data from 2007 and 2018 showed Horsham residents spent an average of $26,060 on pokies a day, or $9.5 million a year.
Sadly, the trend was not unique to the Wimmera.
Across the Northern Grampians and Ararat municipalities, almost the same amount of money was lost across the 168 pokie machines.
In just 144 days, $3,453,638.28 was lost, or about $23983.60 per day.
Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation research has shown low socioeconomic status and co-morbid behaviours such as alcoholism are linked to problem gambling.
Need to talk? Phone Gambler's Help on 1800 858 858 or Grampians Community Health on 5358 7400.
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