NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian announces lockdown for four Sydney LGAs after 22 new coronavirus cases

22 new COVID cases in NSW, four Sydney areas in lockdown

A stay-at-home order will be in place for residents and workers from four Sydney local government areas until at least next Friday with the number of cases linked to the Bondi cluster rising to 65.

NSW recorded 11 locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm on Thursday night, six of which were announced Thursday morning. NSW Health has also been notified of an additional 17 locally acquired cases overnight, which will be included in Saturday's numbers.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said current restrictions, such as mask-wearing in Greater Sydney including the Central Coast, Blue Mountains and Wollongong and Shellharbour, will be extended to at least midnight on Friday, July 2.

The additional stay-at-home orders for the four local government areas will come into effect from 11.59pm tonight after updated health advice from Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant about the growing risk to the community.

"Health remains concerned that given how contagious the virus is we are likely to see more cases in coming days, namely from household contacts," Ms Berejiklian said.

"Previously you may have had one or two other members of a household getting the virus, but because this is a contagious strain we anticipate that close to 100 per cent of everybody in a household is likely get the virus if one person has had a positive test result.

"We also appreciate given the patterns of behaviour that we've seen, that many workers unfortunately who are face to face with a number of clients during the day have also been transmitting the virus."

IN OTHER NEWS:

Ms Berejiklian said residents and workers from the four LGAs must stay at home unless it is for an essential reason, which includes essential work, or education, where people cannot work or study from home.

Valid reasons also include shopping for food or other essential goods and services; medical care or compassionate needs; exercising outdoors in groups of 10 or fewer.

Ms Berejiklian, herself captured by the stay-at-home order due to her place of work, said the measures were tough but necessary.

"We appreciate what impact this will have significantly on businesses, especially in the CBD in those four council areas," she said.

"Whilst we are doing really well with the virus, our contact tracers are doing an unbelievable job, the people we're interviewing are doing a great job; the advice from health is we don't want to see this situation linger for weeks, we would like to see this situation end sooner rather than later and we are on top of all the cases at the moment, bar one (a nine-year-old student announced previously).

"This is really to make sure we can prevent further spread, prevent further dislocation, and it does help us having school holidays, it might not help parents who otherwise had plans, but it certainly helps us if school isn't there."

Ms Berejiklian said she believed the measures were a "proportionate response to the risk" and said there was enough flexibility to enable people to get the supplies they needed - without the need for panic buying.

Dr Chant said it was likely there'd be larger case numbers in coming days, and she had particular concerns about transmission at a Double Bay hair salon - with some 900 clients potentially at risk of infection.

"I have significant concern for patrons and staff of the Joh Bailey hair salon at Double Bay, because we have a least three staff members who were working while infectious, and with two confirmed cases amongst clients so far," she said.

"I expect more cases to be detected over the coming days and I'm urging all clients and staff of the salon between the 15th and 23rd of June to be tested and maintain quarantine as directed by NSW Health."

Dr Chant said contact tracing had uncovered links between cases at the Double Bay salon and cases associated with the Lyfe Cafe in Bondi and Fresh Nail salon at Bondi Junction.

"I can also confirm there were four cases associated with the Lyfe cafe in Bondi and I'm also concerned that a case identified yesterday attended two gyms while infectious - Fitness First Platinum at Bondi Junction on June 21 or Fitness First Bondi Junction Spring Street on June 22," she said, advising gym-goers to check the affected times on the NSW Health website and follow the recommendations for testing and isolation.

"...The key issue is because of the growing number of venues, and the fact we've had confirmed transmission at a number of the venues, we need to reduce people's movements, so by the time we're getting to them they have had a limited number of activities or sites they've done, so hence the advice to extend the stay-at-home directions to those four government areas."

Dr Chant said she was also concerned about "seeding events" into regional areas, which is why the current restrictions would remain in areas like Wollongong and the Blue Mountains. And why those who live or work in the four LGAs as well as those in Inner West, Canada Bay and Bayside areas cannot travel outside metropolitan Sydney unless essential.

"The rationale for including the stay-at-home order to follow the workers is because we know that many of the workers do live outside those geographical LGAs so we want them to follow the stay-at-home orders so again we don't establish seeding," she said.

Of the 11 locally acquired cases reported to 8pm last night, six cases were already announced yesterday. They are:

  • A man in his 30s who attended the Christo's Pizzeria in Paddington at the same time as a previously reported case.
  • Three women who are close contacts of a previously reported case who works as a hairdresser at a Double Bay hair salon. All have been in isolation while infectious.
  • A man in his 40s who is linked to the West Hoxton birthday party, attended by previously reported cases linked to the Bondi cluster. As of 8pm last night, a total of 17 people who attended the party have now tested positive for COVID-19.
  • A man in his 40s from Sydney's eastern suburbs who is linked to the Bondi cluster.

Five further locally acquired cases were notified to 8pm last night. They are:

  • A man in his 30s, a woman in her 30s, and their child who are household contacts of each other from Sydney's eastern suburbs.
  • A woman in her 80s from Sydney's eastern suburbs.
  • A man in his 20s from the Sutherland Shire who is a close contact of a previously reported case and has been isolating while infectious.

Of the 17 locally acquired cases notified overnight; 14 are linked to known cases, and three cases are under investigation.

NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Gary Worboys said police were now moving into a "compliance and enforcement" phase, with around 150 cautions already handed out to people for not wearing masks, mainly on public transport.

He said people should expect to see an increased police presence on public transport and in and around cafes, pubs and clubs to ensure people were adhering to rules and restrictions.

NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard urged everyone to comply with the public health orders which would be effective from 4pm today.

"I think that we also have to recognise that it's very hard to make a law against stupidity," he added.

"No matter what we do, people have to actually apply some common sense. And they have to understand that we're living in a pandemic that's killed almost four million people across the world."

One new overseas-acquired case was also recorded in the 24 hours to 8pm on Thursday night, bringing the total number of cases in NSW since the beginning of the pandemic to 5507.

Ms Berejiklian said it was pleasing to see high testing rates, with 47,603 tests reported to 8pm last night, compared with the previous day's total of 48,402. NSW Health also administered a record 18,918 COVID-19 vaccines in the 24 hours to 8pm last night.

UPDATED RESTRICTIONS ACROSS GREATER SYDNEY FOR THOSE WHO LIVE OR WORK IN THE CITY OF SYDNEY, RANDWICK, WAVERLEY OR WOOLLAHRA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS:

  • Stay at home unless absolutely necessary.

  • Four reasons to leave home: If you can't work from home or be educated at home, to exercise outside in groups of less than 10, if you must provide care to a relative, or to buy essential goods or services.

  • Stay-at-home order will remain in place until at least next Friday.

FOR THOSE WHO LIVE OR WORK IN THE CITY OF SYDNEY, RANDWICK, WAVERLEY OR WOOLLAHRA LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS, AS WELL AS INNER WEST, CANADA BAY AND BAYSIDE:

  • Do not travel outside metropolitan Sydney unless essential.

FOR ALL OTHER GREATER SYDNEY, CENTRAL COAST, BLUE MOUNTAINS, WOLLONGONG AND SHELLHARBOUR RESIDENTS:

  • One person per four square metre rule applies indoors and outdoors, including at weddings and funerals.

  • Masks compulsory in all indoor non-residential settings, including workplaces, and at organised outdoor events.

  • Visitors to households limited to five, including children.

  • Dancing banned at indoor hospitality venues or nightclubs.

  • Dancing allowed at weddings for the bridal party, which must be no more than 20 people.

  • Singing by audiences at indoor shows or by congregants at indoor places of worship banned.

  • Dance and gym classes limited to 20, masks required.

  • Outdoor seated events limited to 50 per cent seated capacity.

  • Public transport capacity limits, and green dots on seats, are back.

  • Drinking while standing at indoor venues banned.
This story 22 new COVID cases in NSW, four Sydney areas in lockdown first appeared on Illawarra Mercury.