As of 11.59 pm tonight, all of Greater Sydney and the Central Coast in New South Wales will be classified as a ‘red zone’ in Victoria’s ‘traffic light’ system.
The move bars anyone who has recently visited (since December 11) or currently in those areas to travel back to Victoria.
“If you do arrive back or travel here you will face 14 days of mandatory hotel quarantine,” Premier Daniel Andrews said.
A small window of return, however, has been given to Victorian residents coming back. Residents arriving before 11.59pm tomorrow, Monday, will have to be tested within 24 hours and have the option to complete the two-week long quarantine at their home.
“If that is not safe we will try and put you up in a hotel. That is a special arrangement for those from Victoria coming back to Victoria.
If you are not from Victoria you arrive after midnight tonight, then you will go into mandatory hotel quarantine.
“The door will close for home quarantine for Victorians on midnight Monday night,” Mr Andrews explained.
A new permit system was also announced for anyone travelling to Victoria by road, excluding red zone arrivals that will not get one.
Local border communities between the two states will not be subjected to the permit system, able to move freely within the border bubbles with their driver’s license.
And while the remaining of New South Wales remains a green zone for the moment, the situation is dynamic and “that can change”, Mr Andrews noted.
The tight border restrictions are enforced after NSW reported 30 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, with the Victorian Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton saying that the new measures were based on the expectation of additional cases emrging from the growing Northern beaches cluster.
Meanwhile, South Australia has also announced a requirement for all arrivals from the Greater Sydney area to quarantine for 14 days from midnight tonight, Sunday, with anyone been in the Northern Beaches barred entirely from entering the state.
Anyone arriving to SA from the rest of New South Wales will be required to undergo a COVID-19 test.
Since Saturday, a 14-day quarantine requirement was also enforced by Queensland for Nothern Beaches arrivals, both visitors and returning residents.
The local government area has also been declared a hotspot by the Northern Territory imposing a 14-day quarantine for arrivals, while in Tasmania this applies to all greater Sydney.
The ACT is the only state/territory with no border restrictions currently in place, thought any arrivals from the northern beaches have to self-isolate and get tested.
Western Australia reinstated the hard border policy with NSW with only special exceptions allowing people from NSW to fly in the state after Saturday 19 December.