New Year’s Eve: Sydneysiders stick to the rules as they usher in 2021
Police say they are “generally pleased” with Sydneysiders who celebrated a New Year’s Eve hampered by COVID-19 restrictions.
The downsized seven-minute fireworks display had virtually no audience, with police granting only 5000 people entry to the Sydney Harbour foreshore.
On the water, vessel patronage was down to just 20 per cent of the usual NYE traffic.
Instead, millions rung in the new year at home with immediate family and friends, restricted to only five guests in any one household.
Seven $1000 fines were issued to individuals who breached restrictions, and five $5000 fines were issued to businesses.
Across the state, 219 arrests were made and 290 charges laid for various offences.
Police Minister David Elliott warned the relatively low number of arrests is “an anomaly”.
“Overall, it really is the story of NSW over the course of the pandemic: compliance has been 99 per cent of the population,” he told John Stanley.
“That’s the reason why we can get back to business as usual as quickly as we can.”
Concern over unfenced parks proved unwarranted, with police effectively using move-on powers for the few revellers who gathered there.
“Nobody there was doing it necessarily maliciously, or in defiance of police.”
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