Covid updates: Cases fall in NSW, Victoria amid eased restrictions; WA tightens rules

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Victoria and New South Wales have scrapped most Covid restrictions amid falling cases as an outbreak in the nation’s West triggers even tighter rules.

Coronavirus restrictions have eased in Victoria and New South Wales amid falling numbers, but a worsening outbreak in the nation’s West has triggered a tighter set of rules.

NSW on Saturday morning reported 7017 new infections in the past 24 hours, down from 7583.

Eleven people died with Covid on Friday.

There are now 1130 infected people in the state’s hospitals with 59 in intensive care.

Meanwhile Victoria recorded a further 5874 cases and 15 coronavirus deaths on Friday.

The state’s hospitals have 281 Covid patients with 43 in intensive care and five on ventilators.

The update comes as rules in Victoria eased significantly, with masks no longer mandatory in most indoor settings from Friday night.

Premier Daniel Andrews said the decision to ease rules has been attributed to the number of infected people in hospital more than halving over the past month.

“We have made it very clear that we will do everything we can to normalise this virus – to push beyond it to get as close to normal living normal activity as we could possibly achieve,” Mr Andrews said last week.

NSW eased their rules even further on Friday with masks only being required on public transport, airports and hospitals.

Singing and dancing is again permitted at music festivals and the 20,000 person cap on such events set to go.

Premier Dominic Perrottet said a plummeting number of infected people in hospital was the reason behind the changes.

“There are very pleasing signs now in hospitals at the moment right across our state. And so as a result we are lifting a range of restrictions,” he said.

“From time to time, we will see cases increase … This is the new reality.”

However, Western Australia has decided to again tighten its restrictions as the state’s daily case tally climbed to 1043 on Thursday.

It’s the state’s highest number of infections in a day since the pandemic began.

Stage one restrictions will be expanded to the Kimberley as of 6am Saturday.

These rules limit indoor gatherings at a private residence limited to a total of 30 people, 2 sqm rule for most recreational settings and masks in all public indoor areas.

Attendance caps of 200 people also apply for most weddings.

The restrictions are already in place in Kimberley, Perth, Peel, South West, Wheatbelt, Great Southern, and Pilbara.

Stage two restrictions are also reportedly being considered by Premier Mark McGowan which would involve home gathering limits of 10 people and private outdoor gathering limits of 50 people.

Mask wearing would be expanded to children in year 3 and above at schools along with all indoor settings except for at private home.

Originally published as Cases fall in NSW and Victoria amid eased restrictions as WA tightens rules


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