PLANS to re-open Queensland to New South Wales in November are in jeopardy after the southern state recorded three new cases of community transmission.
NSW Health has confirmed there were no new cases in today’s numbers. However, since the previous day’s testing period ended, three cases have been reported.
The new cases, recorded in the Campbelltown, Parramatta and Wollondilly local government areas, will break a streak of 12 days without a locally acquired case.
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NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has said the cases are under urgent investigation.
“Concerningly overnight we’ve had three cases of community transmission,” the Premier said.
“At this stage none of these cases are related to each other.
“This also aligns with traces of the virus that were found in both south-western Sydney and also north-western Sydney, through the sewerage system.”
If these cases do end up being confirmed as community transmission cases the clock to re-open Queensland to New South Wales will restart.
The Queensland Premier has consistently said NSW would need to reach 28 days of no community transmission before the borders could re-open.
Under the state government’s most recent roadmap, the border to NSW was scheduled to open on November 1. If these cases are confirmed the new date would be pushed back to at least November 4.
Ms Berejiklian again reiterated that a 28-day goal would be a near impossible task to reach.
“I always said that what the Queensland government’s definition of what would make it safe for them to open their border was always very high and something unrealistic,” she said.
“I say to the Queensland government, I appreciate you will probably come out today and say the 28 days is ticking from the start.
“Until the end of the pandemic it’s highly unlikely, highly improbable that NSW will ever get to 28 days of no community transmission because that is not how a pandemic works.
“Queensland and WA have the luxury of closing their borders and so they have a higher chance of having zero to few community transmission cases. In NSW where we have an open economy, where people are getting about their business, where we’re hosting major events, we absolutely need the community to be vigilant but we also have to accept that there’s always that element of risk.”