‘I expect more cases to come’: Sydney suburbs to enter lockdown as the city’s COVID-19 cases continue to rise

  • A lockdown has been announced for the eastern suburbs of Sydney from midnight on Friday, impacting Woollahra, Waverley, Randwick and the City of Sydney local government areas (LGAs).
  • Residents and those who work in those areas must stay at home for the next week, and are only permitted to leave in order to purchase essential goods, exercise, receive medical care, or work and study if they are unable to do so from home.
  • New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian says the decision to impose a lockdown was needed after a number of “seeding events” appeared.
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New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian has extended restrictions for the four local government areas of Woollahra, Waverley, Randwick and the City of Sydney, as Sydney’s COVID-19 outbreak grew to 65 cases overnight.

On Friday, New South Wales reported 11 new locally acquired COVID-19 cases in the 24 hours to 8 pm on Thursday, six of which were announced on Thursday morning.

A further 17 were reported overnight, bringing the total number of cases linked to the Bondi cluster to 65.

Kerry Chant, the state chief medical officer, said in a press conference on Friday the NSW government expects this number to grow as those in isolation and people who have come into contact with the virus over the past few days become infectious.

The lockdown will not be lifted until July 2 at the earliest.

It applies to those who live in the four government areas, as well as anyone who works in Woollahra, Waverley, Randwick and the City of Sydney.

Those who live or work in these areas will only be permitted to leave for four reasons, including to purchase essential goods and services, to exercise outdoors in groups of less than 10, and to work or study if you cannot do so from home. Those who need to receive medical care will also be able to leave, as will those who have a need to do so on compassionate grounds.

Businesses that operate in those areas will also not be permitted to open, unless providing essential goods and services, such as groceries, takeaway food and pharmaceuticals.

Quarantine workers and those involved in airport transport will also be required to wear masks or face an $11,000 fine or up to six months imprisonment, Health Minister Brad Hazzard told reporters.

The call by the Premier adds to restrictions put into place by the state government on Wednesday in response to a growing number of cases originating in the eastern suburbs of Sydney.

Those will continue for all of those in Greater Sydney, including a return to a 5-person limit on household guests and compulsory masks in all non-residential indoor settings and workplaces. Masks are also recommended for outside in instances where social distancing cannot occur, with cases tipped to continue rising.

“I expect more cases to come,” Chant said.

She said that the frequency of household transmission appears to be higher with this particular cluster.

“We would generally see between 30% to 40% of household contacts [infected] but that rate has been much more increased amongst close and family contacts,” Chant said.

Compliance crews will also begin monitoring the Eastern Suburbs from Friday, with a $200 fine to be handed out to those failing to wear a mask outside the home.