Australia on Saturday posted 2,077 infezioni, surpassing the previous day’s record of 1,903. New South Wales, which has been under strict stay-at-home orders for nearly three months, said it detected 1,599 new infections.
Authorities warned people on Saturday to continue social distancing, but hot weather across Sydney saw scores of people head to the beach.
New South Wales Health Minister Brad Hazzard said police would be out checking whether people were within 3 miles of their homes, as permitted under emergency rules.
Police and military personnel have for weeks been patrolling the streets of Sydney, issuing fines to those contravening health orders, such as wearing masks.
One person fined was former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who confirmed on Saturday he had been ordered to pay 500 Australian dollars ($ 367) after being pictured not wearing a mask.
“I believe that I was well within the law, reasonably interpreted. But I’m not going to challenge the fine because I don’t want to waste the police’s time any further,” Abbott told reporters in Sydney.
“I never thought that dobbing and snitching was part of the Australian character and I think that the sooner we can leave this health police-state mindset behind us, the better for everyone.”
In neighboring Victoria, authorities reported 450 new locally acquired cases — its biggest one-day rise in locally acquired cases in more than a year.
Australia has now recorded nearly 73,000 Covid-19 cases and a death toll of 1,084.