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More Sydney restrictions threatened as lockdown cases grow

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Harsher localised restrictions could be introduced for communities in Sydney’s southwest if COVID-19 continues to spread rapidly in the area, the NSW premier has warned, as the number of exposure sites in the state continues to grow.

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Gladys Berejiklian on Tuesday announced the lockdown orders governing five million people in Sydney and its surrounds would be extended for a week – until at least July 16.

But with the number of new cases who have spent time in the community while infectious remaining high, it may not be enough to stop the spread in some suburbs, she said.

NSW recorded 27 new local cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Tuesday. Just 13 of the new cases were in isolation for the entirety of their infectious period.

Berejiklian warned case numbers would spike in the coming days due to the highly infectious Delta strain of the virus spreading rapidly in the local government areas of Fairfield, Liverpool and Canterbury-Bankstown.

If the situation further deteriorates in those communities, harsher localised restrictions could be imposed, she warned.

While current restrictions permit exercising in groups of 10 and care visits, the premier implored people in those council areas to avoid such activities.

New venue alerts were issued on Wednesday afternoon for Bunnings in Ashfield, a Commonwealth Bank and Woolworths at Riverwood and a Dan Murphy’s in Strathfield South.

Retail venues in Marrickville, Granville, Woollahra, Fairfield, and Wetherill Park are among the new exposure sites, as are a garage in Ashfield and a petrol station in South Granville.

Seven COVID-19 patients are currently in intensive care, including one in their 30s.

-with AAP

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