The Tweed, Byron Bay and Kempsey local government areas in NSW will enter a snap seven-day lockdown from 5pm.
New South Wales Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the lockdown was triggered after a person with an “appropriate permit” tested positive for COVID-19 after travelling from Sydney to Northern NSW.
The man flew on a Virgin Flight from Sydney to Ballina on Saturday.
Mr Hazzard said the worker received both a rapid antigen and PCR test. The rapid antigen test was negative but the PCR test returned a positive result.
“It will be initially for seven days. And it will be reviewed. Public health will be out encouraging, obviously, testing and I certainly, as health minister, I encourage everybody in those areas to take this very seriously,” Mr Hazzard said.
“So far, those areas have been kept relatively safe but we need the community to keep getting tested so that the public health team can be very, very certain of what we need to do at the expiration of those seven days.
“Please go out and get tested and go and get vaccinated obviously. Get vaccinated.”
NSW Deputy Chief Health Officer Dr Marianne Gale said health officials had identified exposure sites.
“The concern and what our local public health team are doing up there is about a number of exposures in the Byron Bay area, a number of shops as well as some restaurants and pubs in the Tweed area as well.”
Mr Hazzard said he spoke with local MPs and community leaders from the affected LGAs and there was a “general understanding” of the need for lockdowns.
NSW has recorded 1022 new cases of coronavirus in the past 24 hours, an increase from yesterday’s figures.
Eight men and two women have died in the past 24 hours of the disease.Internet Explorer Channel Network