Gladys Berejiklian announces record 177 COVID cases, confirms Greater Sydney's lockdown will be extended
28 July 2021
(See Translation in Arabic Section)
New South Wales has recorded 177 local coronavirus cases – a new record in the state’s latest outbreak – and an additional death as Greater Sydney’s lockdown is extended for a further four weeks until August 28.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Wednesday morning announced, “it would not have been possible for us to get out of lockdown tomorrow or Friday” as earlier planned.
The stay-at-home orders are being extended for all of Greater Sydney, including the Central Coast, Wollongong, Shellharbour and the Blue Mountains.
The premier confirmed construction would be allowed to resume from Saturday and a singles bubble would be introduced, as three new local government areas (LGAs) in Sydney's west are plunged into tougher restrictions.
"To the people of NSW, thank you for your patience, I am as upset and frustrated as all of you that we were not able to get the case numbers we would have liked at this point in time," MS Berejiklian said.
"But that is the reality. We have to deal with the cards here before us and the situation before us and that is why we have taken the action we have."
Of the new cases, 46 were infectious in the community, 22 were in isolation for part of their infectious period and the isolation status of 62 remains under investigation.
"46 infectious in the community and that is the key number we are looking at in the next few weeks," Ms Berejiklian said.
"We want that number to come down to as close to zero, looking at other areas but based on the advice of health, we cannot release any of them."
Three LGAs- Parramatta, Georges River and Campbelltown - will now join five others in being subject to tighter restrictions.
Residents in those locations are not allowed to leave the area unless they are a critical worker.
"We do not want anyone leaving those areas unless they absolutely have to," Ms Berejiklian said.
A singles bubble has also been confirmed for residents who live on their own.
"If you have been living by yourself, you are allowed to nominate one person that is allowed to visit you. It has to be outside of those eight local government areas," the premier explained.
"If you are within those areas it has to be within those areas and within a 10 kilometre distance. You cannot have a different person every day."
Students will continue home learning for the next four weeks - with the exception being Year 12 students, who will return on Monday August 16.
The NSW Government will also begin vaccinating students aged between 16 and 18 with the Pfizer jab in the heavily-hit eight local government areas.
The Pfizer doses for the students will be taken from parts of regional NSW.
"I want to stress that while we have not been given extra doses of the vaccine from any other government, state or federal government, want to thank in advance regional NSW where we will take some Pfizer vaccines given the changing health advice around AstraZeneca," Ms Berejiklian said.
"And make sure that Year 12 students in those local government areas of consent are provided with the vaccine.
"We do not want students coming face-to-face learning, getting the virus taking it home their families that is why we will start a vaccination program."
'Death sentence': Gladys' chilling warning
The Premier has given a grim warning to those who continue to visit family members outside their own household.
She said those who think they're doing their relatives a favour by dropping by could actually be signing their "death sentence".
She gave the example of a funeral which resulted in 45 out of 50 attendees later testing positive.
"…you might think you are doing your grandmother or your aunt a favour by dropping in and giving them food or going into say hello, but that could be that death sentence," she said.
"Do not do it. "