CLOSE contacts of two COVID-positive cases in Kempsey were stopped by police in Port Macquarie and issued fines for breaching Public Health Orders that required them to be self-isolating.
About 8.45pm on Monday, September 20, officers from Traffic and Highway Patrol stopped a vehicle on Hastings River Drive, Port Macquarie, for the purpose of a random drug test.
The 29-year-old female driver allegedly returned a positive roadside result.
The woman, a 31-year-old male passenger and an eight-year-old girl were taken to Port Macquarie Police Station.
Further inquiries revealed all three were identified as close contacts of a positive COVID-19 case and had been directed by NSW Health to self-isolate at a residence in South Kempsey.
Both the man and woman were issued with $1000 PINS for fail to comply with noticed direction re s 7/8/9 - COVID-19.
Police will await the results on secondary testing prior to taking any action in relation to the alleged positive drug test.
There are now three positive COVID cases in Coffs Harbour and two cases in Kempsey.
The two cases in Kempsey are household contacts. These cases forced the local government area into a snap seven-day lockdown at 5pm Tuesday.
The return to stay-at-home orders was imposed due to an increased COVID-19 public health risk.
MNCLHD chief executive Stewart Dowrick implored people to follow COVID-safe practices, to comply to the stay-at-home orders in affected regions and get tested even if they have the mildest of symptoms.
"Get tested at the earliest sign of symptoms such as a runny nose, scratchy throat, fever, headache, cough or loss of taste and smell. Remember, after being tested you must isolate until you receive a negative result," Mr Dowrick said.
All residents in the Kempsey LGA must stay at home unless it is for an essential reason, which includes:
- shopping for food
- medical care
- getting vaccinated
- compassionate needs
- work or tertiary education if you can't work or study at home
People who are fully vaccinated can attend an outdoor gathering of up to five people for exercise or outdoor recreation, as long as all of those aged 16 or older are fully vaccinated.
To determine the extent of the risk and detect any further potential COVID-19 cases in the area, the MNCLHD is calling on the communities to come forward for testing in large numbers.
"A strong response to testing will be a key factor in determining if these stay-at-home orders are extended beyond one week," Mr Dowrick said.
"High vaccination rates are also essential to reduce the risk of transmission and protect the health and safety of the community."
A full list of COVID-19 testing clinic locations and opening hours are listed on the NSW Government website at www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/health-and-wellbeing/clinics
There have been 11 cases reported in the MNCLHD since the beginning of the current NSW outbreak in June.
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Further inquiries are underway by Mid North Coast Police District in relation to any other breaches of the Public Health Order.