Two men rescued from a national park they ran into after being startled by a deer while sunbathing naked on a nearby beach, and a man caught travelling from Sydney to Goulburn were among 44 people fined on Sunday (27 June) for breaking Sydney’s COVID-19 public health orders.
NSW Police, the NSW State Emergency Service and NSW Ambulance launched a search and rescue for the two men lost in the Royal National Park at Otford at around 6:00 pm on Sunday.
Emergency services first located a 30-year-old naked man carrying a backpack on the walking track near Lady Wakehurst Drive.
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After a further search, a partially clothed 49-year-old man was also located.
The men told police they were on a nearby beach when they ran into bushland after being startled by a deer.
They were taken to St George Police Station and issued $1000 fines for breaching the current public health order prohibiting those from Greater Sydney travelling outside the region.
NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller described the event as “unbelievable”.
“It’s difficult to legislate against idiots, but clearly they were putting people at risk by leaving home without a proper reason,” he said.
“But then getting lost in the national park and diverting important resources away from the health operation, I think they should be embarrassed.”
In another incident, police stopped a 33-year-old man who had left Ermington in Sydney and was on the Hume Highway at Goulburn.
He was also issued a $1000 fine for leaving Sydney and was directed to return home immediately.
NSW Police said they received hundreds of calls from the public over the weekend reporting potential public health order breaches.
In total, 44 people were issued $1000 fines on Sunday. Another four people received $200 fines for not wearing a face mask.
Police continue to appeal to the community to report suspected breaches of any ministerial direction or behaviour that may impact the community’s health and safety.
Anyone who has information regarding individuals or businesses in contravention of a COVID-19-related ministerial direction is urged to contact Crime Stoppers.