Bondi closed after beachgoers condemned for ignoring social distancing rules


Bondi closed after beachgoers condemned for ignoring social distancing rules
The New South Wales Government has announced it is closing Sydney’s Bondi Beach after thousands flouted social distancing rules by flocking there on Friday.

The move was ordered by NSW Police and Emergency Services Minister David Elliott, and the measure will extend to other beaches if necessary.

The world has reacted with shock and anger over the large crowds seen on the beach.

The beachgoers gathered despite Prime Minister Scott Morrison banning gatherings of more than 500 people outdoors.

While providing an update on the coronavirus on Saturday, Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt criticised people for not following social distancing advice.

“Around the country people are generally taking enormous strides but what happened in Bondi was unacceptable and the local council must take steps to stop that occurring,” he said.

“Our message to local council is this is all of our responsibilities each of us as individuals, groups, families.

“Where something like this is occurring the local council must step in, that message is absolutely clear.”

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews also condemned the behaviour of bathers as he provided an update on cases in Victoria.

“The only thing that is achieved by hanging around like that is spreading the virus. That is no good for you, no good for your loved one, no good for people who are frail and vulnerable,” said Andrews.

“There is no joking about this. If we don’t flatten the curve and suppress the number of people testing positive, the spread of the virus, hospitals will be overwhelmed and that means more people will die.”

It comes as the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Victoria has jumped sharply, increasing by 28 per cent overnight.

The tally of cases in the state is now 229, with 51 new positive cases being confirmed by doctors.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt told media on Saturday afternoon that there are now 874 cases  of the coronavirus in Australia.

The death toll remains at seven.

International publications have criticised the Bondi beachgoers, with UK newspaper Metro tweeting that the situation was “unbelievable”.



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