South Australia BANS Sydneysiders from the state as premiers rush to keep the growing Northern Beaches cluster in NSW
- South Australia ordered travellers from Sydney to enter 14-day quarantine
- Residents outside of Sydney are exempt from the hardline travel restriction
- Announcement comes as Sydney recorded another 30 new cases of Covid-19
- Total figure sits at 68 since cluster broke out in the northern beaches
Sydneysiders travelling to South Australia have been banned from entering the state without first going through mandatory 14-day quarantine.
The restriction comes as New South Wales premier Gladys Berejiklian announced 30 new Covid-19 cases in Sydney on Sunday.
The new cases brings the total to 68 since the cluster broke out in the northern beaches earlier this week.
State premiers have been quick to introduce new travel restrictions after the nation’s health ministers met on Saturday afternoon.
South Australia is taking no chances and requires all travellers from Sydney to enter mandatory quarantine for two weeks.
Residents living outside of Sydney are exempt from the restriction.
Sydneysiders travelling to South Australia have been banned from entering the state without first going through mandatory 14-day quarantine (pictured, testing on Saturday)
Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan took the strictest approach, reimposing a ‘hard’ border with all travellers from NSW.
Only those with exemptions – such as essential health and freight workers – will be allowed in after 12.01am on Sunday.
‘This has been a difficult decision to make especially given the time of year,’ Mr McGowan said.
He said NSW health authorities had taken a ‘whack-a-mole’ approach to the outbreak so far.
‘They seem to step on a gym here, or a restaurant there,’ he said.
‘This is causing grief all over Australia so they need to kill the virus in NSW.’
The northern beaches outbreak grew by 23 cases to 40 cases on Saturday, with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian saying she expected at least the same number of fresh cases to be recorded on Sunday.
Victorian health authorities are expected to expand the ‘red zone’, which currently only covers the direct Sydney peninsula area where the latest virus cases have been detected.
Late on Saturday, Victoria extended its ‘orange zone’ from greater Sydney to include the NSW Central Coast region after positive coronavirus cases were confirmed.
Contact tracers have identified 70 primary close contacts of northern beaches cases among travellers who have arrived in Victoria between December 11 and 17, sparking concerns in the southern state.
‘We remain extremely concerned about the outbreak in NSW and the likelihood that it has seeded beyond the northern beaches,’ Health Minister Martin Foley said.
The state marked 50 consecutive days of no local virus transmission and authorities are desperate to protect the hard-won gains.
About a quarter of a million people were put on Saturday into a strict lockdown until Christmas Eve, with the northern beaches cluster now at around 70, with some of the cases still under investigation (pictured, testing in Bondi on Saturday)
Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwein announced travellers from all areas of Sydney would have to quarantine for two weeks on arrival to his state.
Queensland reintroduced a border pass system from 1am on Sunday.
All jurisdictions are telling their residents to reconsider travel to Sydney.
Northern beaches residents are currently under strict stay-at-home orders until Wednesday.
Ms Berejiklian said it’s possible restrictions will soon apply across the whole city.
Meanwhile, the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race, scheduled to begin on Boxing Day, has been cancelled because of the Tasmanian restrictions on visitors from NSW.