Australia’s New South Wales Adjusts To New Borders And Covid Rules
SYDNEY — School holiday plans are in tatters for many Sydney residents, with some confined to the metropolitan area as New South Wales struggles to contain a coronavirus cluster following a “super-spreader event”.
Other states have imposed a variety of restrictions for Sydneysiders, with Western Australia and South Australia shutting their borders completely to anyone from New South Wale.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian urged residents to “abandon non-essential activities” and enacted rules for residents in Greater Sydney, the Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour on June 23.
A household guest limit of five, including children, and the four-square-meter rule indoors and outdoors were introduced alongside mandatory masks in all indoor non-residential settings, including workplaces.
“The New South Wale government will not hesitate to go further and harder if we have to,” the premier said on June 23.
The so-called Bondi cluster now stands at 31 after an unvaccinated Sydney airport limousine driver last week tested positive to the highly infectious Delta variant, which quickly started spreading at Bondi Junction’s busy Westfield shopping center.
New South Wale recorded 10 locally acquired cases to 8 pm on June 22, seven of which were already announced.
An additional 13 cases were reported after 8pm, which will be counted on June 24’s official tally.
Overall, there have been 16 new cases, taking the total number of infections to 31.
Residents who live or work in the City of Sydney, Waverley, Randwick, Canada Bay, Inner West, Bayside, and Woollahra local government areas cannot travel outside the metropolitan area unless it’s absolutely essential.
Masks must also be worn to gym classes, which are now limited to 20 people.
More than 44,000 tests were completed in the 24 hours to 8 pm on June 22.
Eight of the 13 additional cases were at a birthday party attended by about 30 people in West Hoxton on June 19, which New South Wale Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant described as a “super-spreader event”.
Other states have hardened their borders two days before New South Wales public schools break for two weeks.
Western Australia has closed its border to New South Wales for anyone who had been in the state since June 11 or in the 14 days prior to travel. The West Australia government released a statement regarding the restrictions.
Southern Australia has also closed its border with New South Wales, excluding a 100km buffer zone for cross-border communities. The government also provided a set of instructions for the public to follow.
Tasmania has declared seven Sydney local government areas as high risk.
Queensland has closed its border to people from Greater Sydney, the Central Coast, Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour.
Victoria has also already banned people from the seven “hot zones”.
(Edited by Vaibhav Pawar and Praveen Pramod Tewari. Map by Urvashi Makwana)