South Australia will again ease its coronavirus restrictions by raising the cap on private gatherings from 50 to 200 people.

Key points:

  • Restrictions on private gatherings will be lifted to allow up to 200 people to attend
  • A COVID-safe plan must be in place for events with more than 50 people
  • SA could lift its remaining NSW travel restrictions on January 31, provided there are no outbreaks

The state’s Transition Committee met today and made no changes to travel restrictions with New South Wales, but the Premier suggested they could be lifted on January 31.

Steven Marshall said while the limit on the number of guests at home gatherings would be raised from midnight tonight, a COVID-safe plan and QR scanners must be in place for events with more than 50 people.

“That upper cap will move to 200 but there are some special arrangements we will need to consider,” he said.

“[For events] between 50 and 200, residents would need to have a COVID-safe plan in place, they would need to appoint a COVID marshal for their function, they would need to keep a guest list and they would also need to use a QR scanner.”

The one-person-per-two-square-metre rule will still apply.

Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier said the eased restrictions would also bring “relief” to “brides and grooms going into this year”.

“To get a QR reader, people need a COVID-safe plan.

“It literally could be five or 10 minutes [to do] … it’s not something that takes a long period of time.”

Professor Spurrier said that while a COVID marshal must attend, online training for the role was straightforward.

“It’s online and it’s just going through a series of slides and a series of questions, so not a difficult thing,” she said.

“You just need to pick somebody who’s going to be at the event that’s reliable and can be trustworthy and get them to do their online training.”

Those found breaching the new requirements for private gatherings could face fines of up to $1,000.

“If it is a major breach that we don’t feel is satisfactorily dealt with by issuing an expiation we could actually take a person to court where the penalty could be up to $25,000,” SA Police Commissioner Grant Stevens said.

SA adds two cases to coronavirus tally

Mr Marshall said the state was aiming to lift travel restrictions with anyone who had visited Greater Sydney, Wollongong and the Central Coast on January 31, provided there were no further outbreaks.

He said there was still concern about the locally acquired coronavirus cases in Sydney which came to light last Sunday.

The border between South Australia and New South Wales could be open as soon as January 31.(Instagram: two_young_nomads)

SA today recorded two new coronavirus cases, both of them “old infections” in returned travellers in medi-hotels.

The two individuals are a woman in her 20s and a man in his 40s.

“They are not of major concern because … they’re both old infections,” Professor Spurrier said.

“We will be adding them to our cases.”

There are currently five active cases in SA, and a total of 596 since the pandemic began.