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Premier cites fears of ‘seeding’ in regional Victoria for border backflip

The NSW-Victoria border will close on Tuesday at 11.59pm, with travellers required to obtain a permit to cross.

The border closure will be enforced by NSW police, and returning residents will be required to quarantine at home for 14 days.

The mutual decision by the Premiers of both states to shut the border was described by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian as a last resort.

“We don’t take it lightly,” she told Jim Wilson.

“There weren’t any other options available to keep our people safe.”

Jim questioned whether there was a “lag” on the decision, after more than a fortnight of double-digit figures recorded in Victoria.

However, the Premier was adamant the decision was made as soon as health advice changed.

Victorian health authorities, she said, could no longer guarantee the virus wasn’t “seeding” in regional communities.

“Even when NSW had more than 200 cases a day, the vast majority were overseas travellers or their direct contacts.

“Victoria is very different – unfortunately, the vast majority of their transmission is community-based. They can’t trace where it’s coming from.”

Ms Berejiklian assured listeners, especially those in border communities, arrangements for an exemption would be made accessible through Service NSW.

“We kind of knew this is where we’d end up.

“You had to give Victoria the opportunity to clamp down … but what we’ve seen today for the first time is really a creeping out of cases beyond those hotspots.”

Click PLAY below to hear the full interview