Connect with us

Australia

Covid: Australian states enforce travel bans amid Sydney outbreak

Published

on

Australian states and territories have begun enforcing entry bans on Sydney residents amid a growing coronavirus outbreak in the nation’s largest city.

The border closures outside New South Wales (NSW) have dashed Christmas plans and family reunions for many people.

Airlines cancelled several flights leaving Sydney Airport on Monday, following a midnight deadline.

The city has recorded 83 cases so far in this outbreak, all linked to Sydney’s Northern Beaches region.

Speaking from Canberra on Monday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said: “2020 is not done with us yet.”

“The events of the past few days… are incredibly frustrating and disappointing for people all around the country who had plans in place to get together and move in between states.”

However, he and others welcomed the dip in new case numbers reported on Monday.

NSW state authorities recorded 15 new infections – half the previous day’s numbers – out of a record 38,000 tests conducted in 24 hours.

Many viewed the numbers as encouraging that the virus had not spread further beyond the Northern Beaches, which is subject to a local lockdown.

But authorities warned that one day’s results were not enough to determine a trend.

“Obviously, we have halved the number of cases overnight, but in a pandemic, there is a level of volatility, so we’ll closely monitor what happens,” said NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

She said it was too early to tell whether wider restrictions for the city’s five million residents would ease in time for Christmas.

Australia – currently seeing all but no cases outside Sydney – has become known for its swift and aggressive response to outbreaks this year.

In Sydney, indoor gatherings have been limited to 10 guests, and all residents have been told to minimise their social activity and to wear a mask in public spaces. Those living in the Northern Beaches will remain in lockdown until at least Wednesday.

On Sunday, Queensland, Victoria, South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory announced bans on Sydney residents entering their state, adding to bans in other places.

Those states’ residents were told to return within a 12-hour window or face 14 days in quarantine upon arriving home.

Anticipation of these orders prompted an exodus from Sydney on the weekend, with many residents leaving the city before the border shutdowns.

Australia so far has recorded 908 deaths and 28,200 cases in the pandemic – a level far lower than seen in many other nations.

The country took early decisions to close the nation’s borders and mandate hotel quarantine for returning travellers from overseas.

But experts have also credited its success on states acting quickly to lock down hotspot areas and conduct rapid contact tracing and testing processes.

Read from source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-55390731

Continue Reading

Australia

Covid: Brisbane to enter three-day lockdown over single infection

Published

on

By

The Australian city of Brisbane has begun a snap three-day lockdown after a cleaner in its hotel quarantine system became infected with coronavirus.

Health officials said the cleaner had the highly transmissible UK variant and they were afraid it could spread.

Brisbane has seen very few cases of the virus beyond quarantined travellers since Australia’s first wave last year.

It is the first known instance of this variant entering the Australian community outside of hotel quarantine.

The lockdown is for five populous council areas in Queensland’s state capital.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the measure on Friday morning local time, about 16 hours after the woman tested positive.

Ms Palaszczuk said the lockdown aimed to halt the virus as rapidly as possible, adding: “Doing three days now could avoid doing 30 days in the future.”

“I think everybody in Queensland… knows what we are seeing in the UK and other places around the world is high rates of infection from this particular strain,” she said.

“And we do not want to see that happening here in our great state.”

Australia has reported 28,500 coronavirus infections and 909 deaths since the pandemic began. By contrast, the US, which is the hardest-hit country, has recorded more than 21 million infections while nearly 362,000 people have died of the disease.The lockdown will begin at 18:00 on Friday (08:00 GMT) in the Brisbane city, Logan and the Ipswich, Moreton and Redlands local government areas.

Residents will only be allowed to leave home for certain reasons, such as buying essential items and seeking medical care.

For the first time, residents in those areas will also be required to wear masks outside of their homes.

Australia has faced sporadic outbreaks over the past year, with the most severe one in Melbourne triggering a lockdown for almost four months.

A pre-Christmas outbreak in Sydney caused fresh alarm, but aggressive testing and contact-tracing has kept infection numbers low. The city recorded four local cases on Friday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s government has pledged to start mass vaccinations in February instead of March as was planned.

Lockdown interrupts ‘near normal’ life in Brisbane

Simon Atkinson, BBC News in Brisbane

At 8:00 today I popped to the local supermarket for some bread, milk – and because it’s summer here – a mango. I was pretty much the only customer.

When I went past the same shop a couple of hours later it was a different story – 50 people standing in the drizzle – queuing to get inside as others emerged with bulging shopping bags. “Heaps busier than Christmas,” a cheery trolley attendant told me. “It’s off the scale”.

Despite the “don’t panic” messages from authorities, pictures on social media show it’s a pattern being repeated across the city.

While shutdowns are common around the world, the tough and sudden stay-at-home order for Brisbane has caught people on the hop here after months of near normality.

But while such a rapid, hard lockdown off the back of just a single case of Covid-19 will seem crazy in some parts of the world, I’ve not come across too many people complaining.

And I don’t think that’s just because Aussies love to follow a rule. This is the first time the UK variant of the virus has been detected in the community in Australia.

And nobody here wants Brisbane to go through what Melbourne suffered last year. Even if it means going without mangoes.

Read from source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-55582836

Continue Reading

Australia

Australia v India: Five touring players in isolation after restaurant visit

Published

on

By

Five India players are isolating as a precaution after a video on social media showed them eating indoors at a Melbourne restaurant.

Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Shubman Gill, Prithvi Shaw and Navdeep Saini – all part of India’s Test squad to play Australia – will be isolated from other players but are still able to train.

Both teams are investigating to determine whether bio-secure protocols for the tour have been breached.

The third Test begins on 6 January.

The tour is being played with restrictions to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

While in Melbourne, where the recent second Test was played, players and staff are allowed to leave their hotel but if they attend a restaurant they must remain outdoors.

An India supporter posted a video on social media of the five players eating indoors at a restaurant on New Year’s Day.

“The BCCI [Board of Control for Cricket in India] and CA [Cricket Australia] are investigating the matter and seeking to determine whether the outing constitutes a breach of biosecurity protocols,” a Cricket Australia statement said.

“In the interim, on the advice of the Australian and Indian medical teams, the aforementioned players have been placed in isolation as a precaution.

“This will include separating the group of players from the broader Indian and Australian squads when traveling and at the training venue.”

On Monday the teams are due to travel from Melbourne to Sydney for the third Test which will be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

No details were given on whether the five players would be able to play in Sydney.

Pant and Gill both played in the second Test, which India won to level the four-Test series, while vice-captain Rohit was expected to play in the third, having recently quarantined for 14 days to join the squad late after injury.

Read from source: https://www.bbc.com/sport/cricket/55514593

Continue Reading

Australia

Covid: Sydney announces new restrictions ahead of New Year

Published

on

By

Australia has announced new restrictions for Sydney ahead of New Year’s Eve celebrations.

The city is battling a worsening outbreak after months of next to no local cases. Officials reported it had grown to 147 cases on Wednesday.

The news comes amid anger over footage of young revellers seen on Sydney’s Bronte Beach on Christmas Day.

Immigration minister Alex Hawke said tourists caught flouting public health restrictions could be deported.

The virus’s re-appearance in Sydney a week before Christmas sparked a swift re-introduction of restrictions in the city, including clampdowns on holiday gatherings and a lockdown of the worst-affected region, the Northern Beaches.

On Wednesday, the New South Wales (NSW) state government announced further restrictions for New Year’s Eve following the discovery of a new cluster in a separate part of the city – believed to have spread during Christmas gatherings.

“We don’t want New Year’s Eve to be the cause of a super-spreader [event],” said NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

Households will now be restricted to only five guests from Thursday, down from the previous 10-person limit. Outdoor gathering numbers have also been cut to 30 from 50.

Every other state and territory in Australia maintains a travel ban on people from Sydney.

Sydney’s traditional New Year’s Eve fireworks celebrations will still go ahead but authorities have already banned group gatherings at vantage points around the harbour.

Australia has recorded 909 deaths and about 28,300 cases since the pandemic began – a number far lower than many other rich nations.

 

Read from source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-55481851

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 , madridjournals.com