The NSW premier says she’s “pleased” with the state of a COVID-19 community transmission outbreak in Sydney, but the link between an infected man and an ill international traveler remains unclear.
Sydneysiders are again wearing masks on public transport, in supermarkets, and during rideshare trips as health officials try to figure out how a strain of COVID-19 escaped hotel quarantine.
Restrictions for Greater Sydney were reimposed on Wednesday, including mandatory masks in indoor settings, a 20-person cap on indoor gatherings, and a ban on singing.
A health alert was issued on Thursday evening for Haymarket restaurant XOPP. Diners present between 1.30pm and 2.30pm last Wednesday must be tested and self-isolated until they’re negative.
Several places have also been listed as sites where fellow attendees are close contacts who must isolate for 14 days, including the exclusive Royal Sydney Golf Club, a CBD optometrist, and other venues in Paddington, Rushcutters Bay, Moore Park, and Collaroy.
Other places – including several barbecue shops throughout Sydney – are lower-risk, with fellow visitors asked to isolate until they receive a negative result.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Friday said she was “pleased” with the current state of the outbreak, ahead of an update on new case numbers later this morning.
But the missing epidemiological link between the infected east Sydney man – who subsequently infected his wife – and a coronavirus-positive traveler in hotel quarantine remains unclear.
The pair are infected with the same COVID-19 strain.
“The only concern for us is obviously the fact that at least one person has been in the community going about their business for a few days, having the virus and not knowing they have it … it could be more than one,” Ms. Berejiklian told the Nine Network.
“We’re just saying to people: go about your daily business, just be extra safe.”
New Zealand called a time-out on the travel bubble with NSW on Thursday, suspending quarantine-free travel from the state for 48 hours from Friday. The relative idyll in NSW was broken after the east Sydney man, aged in his 50s, tested positive for the virus on Wednesday.
Ms. Berejiklian urged businesses to stay open and Sydneysiders to show up for their Mother’s Day reservations on Sunday. “Every time we go through this in NSW, we learn from what we experience, learn from what we did well or didn’t do well, then we can apply it into the future,” Ms. Berejiklian said.