• Tony Bosworth


A big increase in COVID numbers announced this morning has led to increased fines for not wearing a mask anywhere in NSW - up from $200 to $500.

And for those living in one of the 8 locked down LGAs - which doesn't currently include the Hawkesbury - from midnight there is a 5km radius they can travel from their home for essential reasons.

"If you live in the 8 government areas of concern you need to make sure you wear a mask at all times," said Premier Gladys Berejiklian from this morning from 11am.

"It doesn’t matter what the reason is, no matter if shopping, exercise, you must wear a mask," she said. "If you step foot outside your household you need to wear a mask."

In those 8 LGAs the singles bubble is also set at 5km from midnight.

"Things are likely to get worse before they get better," warned the Premier of the expected increase in COVID numbers.

At the moment there are still 6 COVID cases in the Hawkesbury - no movement there - with the latest total tests carried out up to 15,454 in our area.

Across NSW there were 111,000 tests carried out in the last 24-hours.

And from Friday, Police will have the power to close a public premise, worksite, or business if they continue to flout public health orders.

There are 182 people with COVID in hospital, 54 of those are in intensive care and 22 of whom require ventilation.

Chief Medical Officer Dr Kerry Chant says, "Many of the cases are young. We’ve got two in their teens, eight in their 20s, four in their 30s and three in their 40s. It’s not only an old person’s disease. So everyone should discuss vaccination. My message is get vaccinated."

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