New South Wales registered seven new COVID-19 cases overnight.
One is linked to an overseas traveler, while six were locally acquired transmissions.
Three of these were identified as close contacts who had visited the Chopstix Asian Cuisine restaurant on Smithfield RSL, west Sydney.
State Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian said on Monday that authorities were still concerned about the transfer of the community in western Sydney.
“My anxiety remains the same, if not slightly higher, as we have one of undetected or undetected cases every week.”
“It means the virus may continue to spread in certain parts of Southwest and West Sydney.”
New South Wales has recorded seven new COVID-19 cases overnight (pictured, a nurse performs a COVID-19 test in a pop-up clinic)
Of the new cases announced Monday, one has been linked to a foreign traveler, while six were locally obtained transmissions (pictured, a Sydney resident walks the streets wearing a face mask)
People wearing face masks walk the streets of Sydney as authorities raise concerns about mysterious COVID-19 cases in the community
Ms Berejiklian said the trend was a chilling echo of how the second COVID-19 outbreak spread in Melbourne.
‘If you look back at Melbourne, Melbourne didn’t get worse because of the number of cases they had, they had an undetected community transfer that then subconsciously reached a stage where it happened.’
Ms. Berejiklian went on to ‘apologize unconditionally’ to the residents who contracted COVID-19 after the Ruby Princess cruise saga.
“I want to say that I can’t imagine what it would be like to have a loved one or be someone who continues to suffer and experience trauma as a result.”
The NSW government ordered an investigation into the Ruby Princess after the 2,700 passengers were allowed to disembark from the Sydney cruise ship before receiving the results for COVID-19.
CORONAVIRUS CASES IN AUSTRALIA: 22,851
New South Wales: 3761
Western Australia: 646
South Australia: 460
Australian Capital Territory: 113
Northern Territory: 33
TOTAL CASES: 22,851
CURRENT ACTIVE CASES: 7971
Last updated: August 16, 2020 6:00 PM
Bret Walker SC was tasked with investigating the departure, arrival and disembarkation of the Ruby Princess and held 21 days of hearings from April to July.
He handed his report to Ms. Berejiklian on Friday and it was immediately made public.
“May I now unreservedly apologize to anyone who has suffered as a result of the errors described in the report from individuals within the health department or the health agency and I unreservedly apologize to those who have,” Ms Berejiklian said Monday.
Especially for the 62 people who got the virus in a secondary or tertiary way.
“Those 62 people who were not on the ship, but somehow contracted the virus as a result of that disembarkation.”
The new COVID-19 figures come after NSW recorded five cases of coronavirus in the 24 hours to 8 p.m. on Saturday.
Sydney Girls High School in Surry Hills, an inner city suburb of Sydney, closes Monday for cleaning and contact tracking after a student tested positive for COVID-19.
A trial HSC exam scheduled for Monday has been postponed.
“Although the school site is not operational, learning materials are available through the Department’s (Education) Learning from home website,” the school said on its website.
It is not yet known when the school will reopen.
Sydney Girls High School is a selective public school with approximately 940 high school students hailing from 143 different Sydney zip codes, escalating the potential to spread the coronavirus throughout the city.
Ms Berejiklian said the trend of mystery cases was a chilling echo of how the second COVID-19 outbreak spread in Melbourne (photo, shoppers wore face masks for a Woolworths at the Town Hall Station)
State Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian said on Monday that authorities were still concerned about the transfer of the community (pictured, a nearly empty Wynyard Station on Sunday)
Most students travel to the school by public transport, which increases the possibilities for spreading the contagious virus.
The NSW Department of Education said all staff and students have been asked to isolate themselves.
The NSW Health Department urged anyone with symptoms to get tested for covid-19.
Tangara School for Girls, a Catholic girls’ school in Sydney’s northwestern suburb of Cherrybrook, has also been linked to 25 COVID-19 cases.
The school said on its website that it has been professionally cleaned thoroughly but will remain closed until August 24.
Year 12 HSC mock exams were delayed by one week in Tangara.
‘My fear remains the same, if not slightly higher, because every week we have one of undetected or undetected cases,’ Ms Berejiklian said Monday (pictured, residents with face masks in Sydney)
Berejiklian’s government ordered an investigation into the Ruby Princess after the 2,700 passengers were allowed to disembark from the Sydney cruise ship before receiving the results for COVID-19
Beginning Wednesday, all public schools in the state will have to make changes to ensure communities inside and outside the school gate remain safe, NSW Education Department said.
Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 should not return to school until a negative test result has been reported.
Forming, dancing, graduation ceremonies, choirs, and all social events are prohibited and students must remain within their relevant class or year groups.
Schools are not allowed to travel outside of their local community or zone, and interschool sports and zone carnivals are limited to 100 people per site and are held locally.
Spectators, including parents and guardians, are not allowed on school grounds or at sporting events held during school hours.
Schools can hold a year 12 conference in school without parents to acknowledge school completion or postpone events until later in the year.
Pictured: Ruby Princess docks in Port Kembla, south of Sydney, amid a police investigation
However, students and staff required to support HSC students are allowed to meet their HSC requirements with COVID-19 security measures.
The largest NSW cluster comes from the Thai Rock restaurant in Wetherill Park in far west Sydney, which has infected 116 people so far, according to NSW Health figures released on Sunday.
The second largest cluster is 73 people infected after a funeral in Bankstown, west Sydney.
Australia now has 22,851 infections, most of them in Victoria.
Worldwide there were 21.6 million cases of coronavirus on Sunday evening with 769,207 deaths according to Worldometers statistics.
The US remains the worst affected country with 5.5 million cases and 172,606 deaths, followed by Brazil with 3.3 million cases and 107,297 deaths.
The Tangara School for Girls in western Sydney has infected 25 people in its cluster
Health warning for NSW restaurants
NSW Health on Sunday issued a warning to four sites in Sydney where people were found who had coronavirus from August 2 to August 8.
People who have visited the following locations at the following times are considered ‘casual contacts’ and should check themselves for symptoms and get tested.
* Milton Park Country House Hotel in Bowral on August 2 between 7:45 PM and 9:15 PM
* Crust Pizza Concord on August 6 between 5:00 PM and 9:00 PM
* Den Sushi Rose Bay on August 8 between 7.15 pm and 8.45 pm
* Café Person Double Bay between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.
These warnings follow Saturday’s warnings about other restaurants in the state, including a new outbreak at the Smithfield RSL in Western Sydney.
Affected sockets are:
* Chopstix Asian Cuisine restaurant from Friday July 31 to Saturday August 9
* Rick Stein at Bannisters in Mollymook on Saturday, August 1, between 8:30 PM and 10:00 PM
A full list of locations can be found on the NSW Health website here.