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Daniel Andrews has issued a dire warning to fellow Victorians in New South Wales to ‘get home quickly’ before the borders are slammed shut at midnight Sunday.
Victorians south of the border are scrambling to rush home before the state’s borders are closed as NSW’s latest coronavirus outbreak worsens.
NSW recorded 77 new cases and one death on Sunday, amid growing speculation lockdown will be extended beyond July 16.
Within hours, Victoria’s acting chief health officer Deb Friedman declared that all of NSW and the Australian Capital Territory will become a red zone under Victoria’s travel permit system from midnight Sunday.
It means all NSW and ACT residents are banned from entering Victoria, despite no cases in regional areas or the ACT.
Returning Victorian residents have until midnight Sunday to cross the border to avoid being forced into isolation for 14 days.
Victoria could shut its borders with NSW within hours after NSW recorded 77 new cases on Sunday. Pictured is Sydney’s CBD on Saturday
‘With case numbers continuing to increase in New South Wales, Victorian public health authorities are concerned about the risks of transmission beyond current red zones in Greater Sydney and surrounds, and the potential risks this poses to the Victorian community from people entering our state,’ the alert states.
Earlier on Sunday, the Victoria Premier issued a final warning for Victorians south of the border to return home.
‘We do not want this virus here in our state,’ Mr Andrews told reporters on Sunday.
‘I am not being critical of Victorians in NSW but if you are there, get back and get back quickly,’
‘You have been warned about circumstances changing quickly and that may well occur in the next hours.’
‘We’ve been abundantly clear: If you are there and you are coming home any time soon I’d come back today. Don’t delay, come back today. ‘
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian expects new case numbers to hit triple figures on Monday as the current outbreak surges toward 600 cases.
Daniel Andrews has urged Victorians south of the border to get home ‘as quickly as possible’ as the NSW coronavirus outbreak worsens
Mr Andrews had this warning for Victorians who don’t
‘After you’ve received your permit, please follow the conditions of that permit … this is just a fact and it needs to be said if you do the wrong thing you will be found you will be fined and you have every chance of becoming very, very famous,’ he said.
It’s the second time Victoria has shut off to NSW within seven months after they were slammed shut last December in the wake of the outbreak on Sydney’s northern beaches.
Victoria recorded its 11th consecutive day without a locally-acquired case on Sunday.
The state closed its borders with NSW and the ACT despite not having the backing of federal health officials.
Border checkpoints at the NSW/Victoria borders (pictured) would be reinstated within hours
‘Internal border closures are a matter for the state governments but we don’t support it at a Commonwealth level,’ Australia’s chief medical officer Paul Kelly told reporters in Canberra.
‘Victorians remember last winter and they want to make sure that they are protected.
‘That is a matter of course for the elected government of Victoria to consider. It is not an easy thing to do, to close the border with NSW.
‘There are many, many places that people can cross that border who I am sure it will be decision not taken lightly.
NSW’s current Covid-19 outbreak is expected to worsen in the coming days. Pictured is a healthcare worker at testing clinic in Fairfield in Sydney’s south-west
Source: Daily Mail