By ALLISON HORE
As the COVID-19 cluster in the Northern Beaches grows, and the local government area goes into lockdown once more, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has urged Sydneysiders to stay home.
The number of COVID-19 cases associated with a cluster in Sydney’s Northern Beaches grew to 39 on Saturday morning, prompting tough restrictions on movement in the area.
From 5pm on Saturday night until midnight on Wednesday, the Northern Beaches local government area will revert to the restrictions which were in place in March. People will be permitted to exercise, visit healthcare providers and go to their local shopping centre, but other kinds of activity will not be permitted.
All 17 pubs in the area closed voluntarily before these heightened restrictions came into place to reduce the spread.
People across the Greater Sydney area have also been asked to limit their movements and avoid any non essential travel. Travel into the Northern Beaches local government area will be restricted to residents only.
In a press conference on Saturday, NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said she hopes putting these restrictions in place early will mean the cluster is under control before the Christmas and New Year period.
“We are hoping that will give us sufficient time to get on top of the virus so we can then ease up for Christmas and the New Year moving forward,” Ms. Berejiklian said.
“For the rest of Sydney, can I please ask everybody to abandon nonessential activity until that time.”
The Premier urged Sydneysiders to abandon their plans for the weekend and consider spending it indoors.
“We want people to stay at home tonight and the next few nights so that we can ensure the virus does not spread,” she said.
Ms. Berejiklian said more cases are expected to emerge over the coming days, but she hopes people remaining at home will keep the outbreak “contained”.
“The case numbers are not looking like they will be going down in the next 48 hours, and if we want a chance to give people a good Christmas and a good New Year’s, we are trying to get on top of it more quickly with this action,” she said.
The number of venues associated with active COVID-19 across the CBD and the Eastern Suburbs cases is also on the rise.
People who have visited the following venue should get tested and self-isolate for 14 days regardless of result:
Those who have visited the following venues should get tested and self-isolate until they get a negative result. Symptoms should continue to be monitored for after this time: