A Victorian teenager holidaying on the New South Wales South Coast has tested positive to COVID-19 as officials consider even tougher border measures to prevent an outbreak in the state.
The boy was informed of their positive test while on a family holiday in Merimbula.
New South Wales health officials say they were not from a Melbourne hotspot and had originally tested negative, but were later told it was a false result.
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The teen and his family had been in Merimbula since July 4 and are now in isolation in the town.
Authorities are also investigating reports a Wodonga man who has the virus, managed to cross the border into Albury.
New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian has warned everyone that the outbreak in Victoria could easily spread to New South Wales if people don’t do the right thing.
“The probability of contagion in New South Wales, given what’s happening in Victoria, is extremely high. The probability that we need to be tougher on those border restrictions is extremely high,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“I ask everybody in those border communities, including residents in New South Wales who live in Albury or Moama or other places across the border, do not travel to other parts of New South Wales unless you absolutely have to.
“If you are an Albury resident, we do not recommend you travelling to other parts of New South Wales and if we feel in the next few days, or as early as tomorrow, that we need to further protect the community, we will consider what we do north of Albury.”
Ms Berejiklian says the Government is considering even more stringent border measures including mandatory 14-day hotel quarantine for New South Wales residents returning from Victoria.
At the moment, returning travellers from Victoria are only required to self-isolate at home.
The Premier has also flagged the possibility of locking down some border communities or scrapping border permits and preventing Victorians entering the state at all.
“New South Wales virtually had zero community transmission on those borders. We can’t be assured that’s the case with Victoria. So whilst we’ve allowed these permits, whilst we’ve allowed a
degree of flexibility until this point, do not assume this will continue.”
“I appreciate the frustration that’s gone on in those border communities but please know we’ve made every effort to keep those border communities in tact.
“If we find that what we’ve allowed to occur compromises the safety of everybody in New South Wales, I can’t guarantee that that situation will continue so we will either have to consider another border north of Albury for example, or how flexible we are with those permits.”