Meanwhile, greater restrictions have been imposed.
Residents in the southern half of the northern beaches are now considered part of greater Sydney while stay-at-home orders applying to residents north of the Narrabeen Bridge will continue until at least Jan. 9.
Five of these new cases are from western and south-western Sydney and are linked to the Berala cluster, which now totals seven with the original source of infection a man in his 40s.
From midnight on Saturday masks will be mandatory in shopping centres, on public transport, in entertainment venues such as a cinema, and fines will come into effect on Monday.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the move balanced the health risk while providing security to citizens but allowed businesses to continue operating.
“On that basis, we are keen to make sure economic activity continues,” Berejiklian said on Saturday.
One new source of infection is under investigation after 32,000 tests were conducted in the 24 hours to 8 p.m. on Friday.
Three cases of community transmission were reported on Friday while the state government is still urging western Sydney residents from Greystanes, Auburn, Berala, and Lidcombe with even the mildest of symptoms to get tested.
NSW Health expanded its list of exposure sites on Friday evening, saying anyone who visited BWS in Berala between Dec. 22 and 31 must get tested immediately and isolate.
Meanwhile, Victoria has officially shut its border to NSW overnight after the decision announced on Thursday prompted a scramble for holiday-makers rushing to get home.
The ACT has also updated restrictions from midday on Saturday requiring anyone travelling to the state from a COVID-19 hotspot in NSW to provide an exemption.
People from Sydney’s northern beaches, Greater Sydney, the Central Coast and Wollongong will not be legally permitted to enter the ACT without a valid pass.
NSW Health has also put out an exposure alert for shoppers who visited menswear store Culture Kings in Sydney between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 28.
Health authorities were relieved to announce a mystery source that sparked the Croydon cluster and two cases in Wollongong was found to be linked to the Avalon cluster revealed by genetic testing.
Other alerts include Bunnings in Ashfield on Dec. 28, Woolworths at Strathfield Plaza on Dec. 20, Woolworths at Berala on Dec. 24, 26, 28, and Haberfield’s Clark Rubber on Dec. 28.
Two coronavirus cases from Victoria travelled to the NSW south coast on Dec. 30 prompting notifications in Eden and Bermagui.
Patrons who dined at the Swallowed Anchor restaurant in Wollongong on Dec. 19 have been urgently called after one case from Croydon and another from the local area both attended on that date.
On Friday evening the Tasmanian government announced NSW’s Wollongong Local Government Area would join Greater
Sydney as a medium-risk area from midnight, meaning arrivals from there will have to quarantine for 14 days.
Tasmania classifies Sydney’s northern beaches as a high-risk area, meaning no entry to Tasmania is allowed unless a special exemption is granted.
By Greta Stonehouse