Australian COVID-19 cases: NSW records 163 virus cases amid Health Minister’s warning of ‘massive grief’

Charlotte EltonThe West Australian
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
Camera IconNSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian. Credit: Pool/Getty Images

NSW has recorded 163 new local cases overnight — a huge surge that NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard warned would cause “massive grief.”

Of the cases, 45 of them were infectious in the community while the isolation status of a further 26 cases remains under investigation.

Of the local cases, just 87 are linked to a known case or cluster. The source of infection for a staggering 76 cases is still being investigated.

“Those numbers really speak for themselves,” said NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard.

Of the 163 new cases, the vast majority hail from Sydney’s west – 67 are from south western Sydney’s local health district, while 45 are from western Sydney.

Eighteen of the new cases are associated with a single gathering that occurred after a family tragedy.

Mr Hazzard said the Government was doing everything it could to work with the local community.

“We need to find ways to, to keep working with that and get the message through,” he said.

“The most dangerous thing you can do in a pandemic is to be near another human being.”

In NSW, 139 patients are currently in hospital and 37 are in intensive care – 36 of whom are not vaccinated.

It comes a day after NSW Chief Health Officer Dr Kerry Chant declared the Sydney outbreak a “national emergency.”

Victoria recorded 12 new local cases overnight, of which 10 were in quarantine during the entire time they were infectious.

The state declared all of New South Wales an “extreme risk zone.”

Under the new category — the most severe in the Victorian travel permit system — people in NSW will only be granted exemptions to travel to Victoria under “exceptional” circumstances.

If travellers enter Victoria without an exemption, they will be put on a return flight or placed in 14 days mandatory hotel quarantine.

Queensland has recorded zero new cases overnight from 14,000 tests.

The donut-day comes two days after a Qantas flight attendant tested positive for the virus. She had crewed six flights while infectious.

South Australia has recorded one new virus case overnight. It is linked to Adelaide winery cluster –currently standing at 15 infections – that sent the state into lockdown earlier this week.

South Australian Premier Steven Marshall said the state was "on track” to exit lockdown on Tuesday.

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