11 July 2021

UPDATED: NSW and ACT declared red zones by Victoria

| David Murtagh
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NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian giving her COVID-19 update this morning. Image: Screenshot.

UPDATED 4:40 pm: NSW and the ACT have been declared red zones under Victoria’s travel permit system by Victoria’s Acting Chief Health Officer.

From 11:59 pm tonight (11 July), the Victorian border is effectively closed to NSW and the ACT – except for Victorian residents returning on a red zone permit for 14 days of quarantine, and for people with exemptions, exceptions or other valid permits (such as specified workers and cross-border residents).

If you aren’t a Victorian resident, you cannot enter Victoria from a red zone without an exception, exemption or other valid permit.

If you try to enter at an airport or seaport, you will be fined up to $4,957 and stay in Hotel Quarantine until return flights can be arranged.

If you try to enter by land, you will be turned away and fined.

Travellers from existing orange zones in New South Wales and the ACT entering Victoria before 11:59 pm tonight can enter on an orange zone permit if they are eligible, including if they are on flights that are scheduled to depart orange zones before 11:59 pm.

Orange zone permit holders are required to isolate on arrival, get tested within 72 hours, and stay isolated until they return a negative result.

A strong police and Authorised Officer presence will continue at Victoria’s land borders and airports. Substantial fines have already been handed down to individuals arriving without a valid permit since current red zones have come into effect.

For more information, visit Victorian Travel Permit System.

3.30 pm: The ACT Government has not yet indicated a change in COVID-19 restrictions despite rising NSW infection rates as Sydney battles a fast-moving outbreak of the Delta strain.

But as NSW braces for the likelihood of more than 100 new cases of the virus on Monday, Chief Health Officer Dr Kerryn Coleman has warned Canberrans that they should be prepared for health advice to change quickly.

On Friday, authorities imposed a two-week home quarantine requirement on people returning from Sydney, extending through the Greater Sydney region to Shellharbour, Wollongong, the Blue Mountains and the Central Coast.

Although there have been no cases beyond the Greater Sydney area, Dr Coleman said that ACT Health continues to closely monitor the situation in NSW.

Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith also said that the situation is NSW was “of increasing concern”.

ACT residents returning from Greater Sydney must quarantine for two weeks and may now only leave home in an emergency or to seek essential medical care, while non-ACT residents must not enter the Territory without a valid exemption and extenuating circumstances.

12:30 pm: NSW has reported 77 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8:00 pm last night, and an elderly woman who tested positive on Friday (9 July) has died in Liverpool Hospital.

At a media conference this morning, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she would be “shocked” if NSW did not record 100 cases tomorrow.

She added that the public should prepare itself for new lockdowns.

“I think it’s pretty plain to see the numbers are not going in the right direction at this point of time,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“I’ve foreshadowed [extended lockdowns] for a number of days.

“If people don’t leave home unless they absolutely have to, we’ll come out of this sooner rather than later.”

NSW Health has reported that of the 77 locally acquired cases, 55 are linked to a known case or cluster – 39 are household contacts and 16 are close contacts.

The source of infection for 22 cases remains under investigation.

A close contact of a locally acquired case, a woman in her 90s from south-west NSW Sydney, died at Liverpool Hospital yesterday. She is the first COVID-19 death in NSW for 10 months.

There have been 566 locally acquired cases reported since 16 June 2021 when the first case in the Bondi cluster was reported.

The majority of the 77 new locally acquired cases are linked to known cases and are particularly prominent among family members, friends and other close contacts, such as work colleagues.

People in Greater Sydney have been ordered to stay at home unless it is absolutely necessary to leave.

NSW Health announced this morning: “We cannot have visitors to our homes, and everyone is reminded that your household only includes those who live with you, not any other family members.”

NSW Police have stepped up movement restrictions in Western Sydney.

More to come.

Original Article published by David Murtagh on The RiotACT.

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