A new, disconnected cluster has arrived in Croydon, Sydney’s inner west, and health officials fear an “undetected spread” is taking place in the city

Dr Kerry Chant, chief health officer, said authorities were struggling to determine the source of the new cluster and expected more cases to be discovered in the greater Sydney area in the coming days

The Croydon cluster comprises 34 close contacts from three households in a suburb of Sydney The extended family held meetings with relatives from Sydney’s southwest, inner-west and central suburbs over several days before Christmas

The new Croydon cluster includes six cases, all of which belong to the same extended family – three adults and three children

Nine cases are linked to the existing Avalon cluster, which has already isolated itself. The cluster now has 138 cases

“We expect there will be more cases related to this [Croydon] cluster just because of so many close contacts over the Christmas period and in the preceding days,” said Dr Chant

Despite the surge in the number of cases outside of the northern beaches and the prediction of more infections, Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the third friendly at the SCG was safe

Premier Berejiklian has announced new restrictions on New Years Eve celebrations in Sydney In Greater Sydney, household gatherings have been reduced to a maximum of five guests including children. The same rules apply to Wollongong, the Central Coast and Blue Mountains

The restrictions on the north end of the northern beaches remain unchanged, but households are limited to five visitors from your zone for the southern zone

The maximum size of outdoor gatherings in the greater Sydney area is now 30 out of 50 people

“We don’t want New Year’s Eve to be the cause of a super-spreader [event],” said the premier, “It only takes one person in a family gathering to give it to everyone else in the family”

Ms. Berejiklian said the SCG test match could be run at 50 percent capacity as it was not a confined space

“The best health council tells us that outdoor seating events, tickets, and seating are safer than house gatherings, and that’s just a fact,” she said

“Science and data show that the greatest chance you will get the virus is from someone you know in a household or indoors”

Face masks are not mandatory, but Dr Chant said masks will be given out to passengers who take public transport to play, however, the New South Wales government believes that wearing masks should be a voluntary act

NSW will also prevent people across Sydney from attending elderly care facilities under the age of 11 January at 59 p.m.

“Until we have a better understanding of community broadcasting across Sydney, we’re taking a very precautionary approach to elderly care visitors,” said Dr Chant

“We understand the implications of this, but until we understand the full scope of the transfer, we don’t want to be accidentally introduced into our elderly care facilities

There are no restrictions on regional New South Wales residents visiting local residents

One new case, announced on Wednesday, was a resident of North Sydney who had visited an exposed site on the northern beaches, and two new cases were from Wollongong locals – a woman in her fifties and a woman in her twenties who have household contacts

The older woman had Buckley’s on Thursday the 17th Visited December 12th, on the Opera House Promenade, leading to the theory that someone in the restaurant was unknowingly contagious, resulting in calls to staff or to people dining inside between 7.30am to 9pm to be tested immediately and themselves isolate themselves until they get a negative test

Persons who died on Thursday 17th December, who were in Lady Macquarie’s chair at the Open Air Cinema screening of Prom, also received the same test and isolate advice

Anyone visiting the Greek Orthodox Church of St. Nektarios visited 3 p.m. and the Greek Orthodox Church of the Holy Cross from 10 a.m. Sunday 27 December 30th to 11am need to be tested and self-isolated immediately until further advice from NSW Health

Meanwhile, Victoria’s COVID-19 test chief says it’s too early to know when the state will lift travel restrictions on travelers from Sydney

Jeroen Weimar stated that it could take a few weeks before the border with NSW is fully reopened

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World News – AU – NSW has recorded 18 local virus cases, including six those with the new croydon cluster related as the restrictions widened

Source: https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/nsw-records-18-local-covid-19-cases-including-six-linked-to-new-croydon-cluster-20201230-p56qt8.html