More than 19,000 people will be forced into home isolation across the Territory from Saturday night, as the ACT tightens its travel restrictions with the New South Wales Capital as Greater Sydney heads into lockdown.
Stay-at-home orders in the ACT now apply to anyone who’s been in the Greater Sydney area, including the Central Coast, Blue Mountains and Wollongong regions.
From 6pm, Canberrans re-entering the Territory who’ve been in any of those areas since June 21 will need to abide by the ‘stay-at-home’ orders for two weeks.
While for people who don’t live in the ACT and who’ve been to the affected areas, they will no longer be able to enter the Territory without seeking an exemption prior to their arrival.
Chief Minister, Andrew Barr has warned this is the biggest threat the Territory has faced throughout the pandemic this year and the risks are significant.
“This next period is one of heightened anxiety and concern.”
“We need everyone to use the Check-In CBR app and to behave and recognise the seriousness of this situation.”
Police will return to the ACT’s border over the coming days as they move to establish ‘spot checks’ on travellers entering the Territory.
The new rules are enforceable by law, with those caught doing the wrong thing subject to on-the-spot fines of roughly $1,000 or even being taken to court.
However, ACT Health Minister, Rachel Stephen-Smith has stressed the ACT’s border is not closed to New South Wales.
“We have an open border, it would be virtually impossible for us to close.”
The Government on Saturday also said it would not implementing tighter restrictions within the local community to match those introduced across Regional NSW.
However, the Chief Minister said he can’t rule out the possibility of that changing over the coming days.
“We will move quickly to respond should there be any cases in the ACT.”