South Australia will open its borders to New South Wales residents this week, Premier Steven Marshall announced on Tuesday, claiming the time is right to recommence travel between the two states with Covid-19 cases coming under control.
From Thursday onwards people from NSW will be allowed to enter SA freely and no longer have to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival. This will be the first time in months travel from the eastern state is given the all clear.
The decision was made despite there being a positive coronavirus case over the weekend in NSW. A taxi driver, who spent nine days working in Sydney while infectious was diagnosed with Covid-19.
But, Marshall said there’s no need to worry and SA Health has all the necessary information in regards to that case and has given the go ahead for the SA border to open.
— 7NEWS Adelaide (@7NewsAdelaide) September 22, 2020
“The high level of cooperation between SA Health and NSW Health has given us all the confidence that this is the right decision,” he said in a press conference on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, Chief Public Health Officer Professor Nicola Spurrier agreed and said with “extremely good contact tracing” in place there’s no concerns about the healthy and safety of residents.
“I’m very confident that (taxi driver) is not representative of community transmission,” she said.
The announcement comes shortly after Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the Sunshine State would be opening its border to parts of NSW next month in a long-awaited relaxation of restrictions to people in the neighbouring states.
From 1am on October 1 the council areas of Byron, Ballina, Lismore, Richmond Valley and Glen Innes will all be included in the border zone and border residents will be able to apply for a border pass and travel around Queensland for any purpose. Queenslanders will also be able travel to the select areas of New South Wales.
“I think is a great effort to consider how we can make our border zones more effective,” the premier said in a media conference. “These areas have a lot in common with Queensland, they usually do a lot of business with Queensland. We’ve also been in contact with the NSW authorities to advise them of this today as well.”
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