The NSW Government has released an update on COVID restrictions to come into effect from midnight tonight.
A statement attributed to NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Minister for Health Brad Hazzard said that "given the risk of COVID-19 transmission on the Northern Beaches and across Greater Sydney (including Wollongong, Central Coast and Blue Mountains), the following adjustments are being made".
From midnight tonight, the southern zone of the Northern Beaches will be subject to the same restrictions as Greater Sydney.
Restrictions for the northern zone of the Northern Beaches remain the same with stay at home orders in place until January 9, 2021. These include no visitors to the home; five northern zone residents can gather outdoors (not at homes) for exercise and recreation, from within the same zone and non-essential businesses remain closed.
"Given the general risk in Greater Sydney, new measures are required to reduce the transmission potential of COVID-19 while maintaining economic activity," the statement said.
"The following measures for Greater Sydney (including Wollongong, Central Coast and Blue Mountains) are effective from midnight tonight:
Face masks will be mandatory at the following indoor settings:
Face masks will also be mandatory for all staff in hospitality venues and casinos and for patrons using gaming services.
From Monday, January 4, 2021, there will be $200 on-the-spot fines for individuals for non-compliance. Children under 12 are exempt but are encouraged to wear masks where practicable.
Further restrictions include:
People are also encouraged to limit non-essential gatherings and reduce their mobility where possible to further minimise the risk of transmission in the community.
Whilst these measures do not apply to areas outside Greater Sydney (including Wollongong, Central Coast and Blue Mountains), all residents and visitors across NSW are urged to practise COVID-Safe behaviours and get tested even if symptoms are mild.
"We thank the community for their patience and understanding. Our priority is always to protect the health and safety of the community," the statement said.
Masks will be mandatory in certain indoor venues in Greater Sydney from midnight tonight as locally acquired cases of COVID-19 increased by seven overnight.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the mask mandate would come in at midnight tonight for certain venues, including shopping centres, gaming areas of pubs and clubs, public transport, entertainment venues such as cinemas, places of worship, hair and beauty salons, and gaming areas of establishments. Staff at hospitality venues will also have to wear a mask.
Fines of $200 will apply to those who do not wear a mask in those venues. These will apply from midnight on Monday. Children under 12 and people with some medical conditions will be exempt.
It comes as there were seven new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night, and an additional 12 cases in returned travellers in hotel quarantine.
Five of the locally acquired cases are from western and south-western Sydney and linked to the Berala cluster, which has grown to seven cases in this cluster.
Another is a household contact of a previously reported case, a patient transport worker, and had been isolating.
Whole genome sequencing has revealed their infection was acquired from returned travellers they transported.
One locally acquired case is from inner south-western Sydney and their source of infection remains under investigation.
More to come.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.