South Australia’s police commissioner says the state’s border restrictions with New South Wales are likely to remain in place until at least the end of January, after seven locally acquired coronavirus cases were discovered in Sydney over the weekend.

Key points:

  • Sydney, Wollongong and Central Coast residents are banned from entering South Australia
  • New coronavirus cases on the weekend have extended the restrictions
  • The ban could become more specific

South Australia’s COVID–19 transition committee met this morning and decided the border would remain shut to people who have visited Greater Sydney, Wollongong and the Central Coast.

The State Government has previously said it wanted 14 days of no new locally acquired cases in NSW before it would reopen its border with that state.

Police Commissioner and state coordinator Grant Stevens said more information was needed about the cluster announced over the weekend.

“SA Health is working with NSW Health to get as much information as possible so we can make our changes as early as possible.”

SA last week relaxed restrictions for regional NSW travellers, but the commissioner today said that lifting remaining travel bans would not occur until the end of the month at the earliest.

“My understanding is that it would roughly be at the end of January if all went well in New South Wales from this point onwards,” he said.

“We need to be continuously assessing what the level of risk is and adjusting that accordingly.”

People from within 100 kilometres of the SA-NSW border can enter with a Cross Border Travel Registration form.

People from the rest of regional NSW can come to SA as long as they do coronavirus tests on their first, fifth and 12th days in the state.

South Australian residents can return from Sydney, Wollongong or the Central Coast by doing a 14-day quarantine.

Police Commissioner Grant Stevens says the State Government may look at limiting the ban to certain suburbs.(ABC News)

Other restrictions may be eased

NSW recorded no new locally acquired cases today or yesterday while SA recorded no new cases at all today or yesterday.

Premier Steven Marshall said he did not want restrictions in place any longer than they needed to be.

South Australia’s transition committee is meeting again later this week.

Mr Stevens said it may then decide to remove or add certain suburbs to the “area of concern” rather than banning travel from throughout Sydney, Wollongong and the Central Coast.

“People can’t currently travel from the Greater Sydney area into South Australia unless they are a returning resident or a genuine relocation, so we may be able to make some concessions on that regard, but we do look for that 14-day incubation,” he said.

“It may be that we’ll introduce more suburbs as part of the area of concern, or we’ll take suburbs out which means people will be able to travel freely from those areas.”

Mr Stevens said the committee may also look at relaxing caps on gatherings, which currently sit at 50 for private residences and 200 for other private functions, including weddings.