Victorians from virus-plagued hot spots who try to enter NSW could be slapped with six months’ jail and an $11,000 fine under tough new rules announced today.
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the new penalties were designed to stop Victorians from affected suburbs from crossing the border.
“Victorians living in virus hot spots have to take the Victorian and NSW health orders seriously and should be very aware that NSW will impose penalties if they seek to leave hotspot suburbs to enter NSW,” he said in a statement.
The order will prevent travel from Melbourne hot spots to NSW unless it is a NSW resident returning home or in special circumstances, such as to obtain urgent medical care or for compassionate reasons.
“The Victorian situation should be taken very, very seriously by NSW residents,” Mr Hazzard told reporters this morning.
“It’s a reminder to us all that this virus is amongst us and we can have an outbreak at any stage.
“The particular suburbs that have been identified yesterday by the Victorian Government must be avoided by NSW residents. If you go to any of these hot spots that have been identified by the Victorian Government, you will be liable to the same penalties as any Victorian and that should be enough warning for you.
“But if you actually … choose to go there when you really shouldn’t be going there and you come back to NSW, you’ll be required to go into isolation here for 14 days, and if you breach that order, then you’ll be liable to a penalty if you’re required by the police to go to court.
“So the message to NSW residents is don’t go to Victorian hot spots, just don’t go.”