Queensland and Western Australia have toughened interstate travel restrictions in response to the latest NSW coronavirus cluster, and other states may follow.
The NSW northern beaches cluster grew to 17 cases late on Thursday, prompting worries state borders could slam shut again just before Christmas.
The Queensland government has announced anyone arriving in the state from Sydney on Friday, and who has been to the northern beaches since December 11, must get tested and self quarantine for 14 days.
Those measures will toughen further from 1am Saturday, when travellers from Sydney who have been to the region will be forced into hotel quarantine.
Queensland has also banned anyone who has been in the NSW northern beaches region since December 11 from visiting aged care homes, hospitals or prisons in Queensland.
The West Australian government says anyone arriving from NSW is required to self-quarantine for 14 days and get tested on day 11.
WA leader Mark McGowan announced the changes on Thursday evening after receiving the latest advice from NSW.
“I understand these changes will cause some frustration and uncertainty for some people,” he said.
Tasmania has already moved to prevent people who visited high-risk locations in NSW from travelling there.
Northern Territory authorities said anyone from the northern beaches area travelling to the NT will need to undertake 14 days of mandatory, supervised quarantine in either Alice Springs or Darwin.
Victoria similarly told entrants to the state from the northern beaches that they must get tested and quarantine in their home or accommodation for 14 days from the date they left the northern beaches.
Meanwhile, people in NSW are being urged not to travel to the northern beaches if they don’t have to.
Northern beaches residents have been told to keep to their household groups, and work from home if they can.
They have also been told to avoid unnecessary travel outside the region, and not to visit high-risk venues including clubs, restaurants, places of worship and gyms.
The northern beaches cluster includes a residential aged care worker and a man who recently performed in a band at three RSL clubs, including in Avalon.
But Prime Minister Scott Morrison is keen to have traffic flowing between the states despite the new virus cases in NSW.
Thursday’s budget update outlined a stronger than expected economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, based in part on the assumption that there will be no interstate border restrictions next year.