Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has been accused of not looking at the “big picture” by his NSW counterpart, after shutting the border to travellers from the state due to a coronavirus outbreak.
People from regional NSW can get a permit to enter Victoria but travellers coming from “red zones” in Greater Sydney, which includes the epicentre of the outbreak in the city’s northern beaches, are being turned back.
Eight new cases of locally acquired COVID-19 were recorded in NSW in the 24 hours to 8pm on Monday, taking the total cases linked to the northern beaches cluster to 90.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian noted she did not close her state’s border with Victoria until it consistently reported between 120 to 180 cases per day during its second wave outbreak.
“We try and look at the big picture … be compassionate as well as assessing the health risk and also the impacts on people’s livelihoods and the mental health issues,” she said on Tuesday,
“There are parts of NSW completely unaffected by this current outbreak and yet everybody in NSW is suffering because other state leaders have made decisions.”
Her rebuke came after Melbourne teenager tested positive for coronavirus after returning home from Sydney’s northern beaches following a family holiday.
The 15-year-old girl visited several NSW exposure sites before driving home to Melbourne with her mother and stopping at Gundagai’s Oliver’s Real Food along the way.
Her mother has so far tested negative and the family of four are isolating at their home in the Moonee Valley local government area.
Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley said there were no known exposure sites in the state and close contacts of the family were being traced.
State testing commander Jeroen Weimar who said the case demonstrated why Victorian authorities had stepped up border controls.
Returning Victorians can no longer return to their home state without spending 14 days in hotel quarantine if they have recently visited Greater Sydney or the NSW Central Coast.