Sydney commuters at the city’s five busiest railway stations are being watched on CCTV by the government to see if they’re wearing face masks.
The Berejiklian government is reportedly monitoring CCTV at Central, Hurstville, Hornsby, Campbelltown and Penrith stations.
Transport for NSW confirmed it was ‘monitoring the use of face masks’ at train stations across Sydney, which are ‘strongly recommended’ but not yet mandatory.
The government collected data from the five stations, located in Sydney’s CBD, west and southwest, every two days for several weeks, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
The data suggested an average of between 30 and 35 per cent of people are using masks when they travel.
The Berejiklian Government is reportedly monitoring CCTV cameras at Central, Hurstville, Hornsby, Campbelltown and Penrith stations (pictured, a man at Town Hall on Monday)
Transport Minister Andrew Constance (pictured) warned masks could become mandatory unless more people follow government advice
There’s currently only a ‘strong recommendation’ to wear masks in public, but Transport Minister Andrew Constance warned they could become mandatory unless more people follow government advice.
Mr Constance said only about 30 per cent of people were wearing masks on public transport, and warned the government hasn’t ruled out making them compulsory.
‘We need everyone to put them on so we don’t have a Melbourne-style lockdown,’ Mr Constance said.
‘My preference is not to fine people, but if we’ve got to move to that mandatory requirement, that’s what we’ll potentially need to go to.’
Earlier this month Premier Gladys Berejiklian advised people to wear masks in enclosed spaces and when social distancing can’t be adhered to.
‘I want to stress it is not compulsory, but it is a strong recommendation from Health, given where we are in the pandemic, given the risk posed from Victoria and given the rate of community transmission in New South Wales,’ she said.
The state on Thursday recorded its first COVID-19 death since August 1 after a Sydney woman in her 80s linked to the Our Lady of Lebanon Church cluster died.
The elderly woman was the 53rd coronavirus death in NSW to date and came as the state recorded 12 new virus cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Wednesday.
NSW Health has also advised of a new public health alert for Liverpool Hospital and Dooleys Lidcombe Catholic Club, with a third hospital staff member confirmed with the virus and a second case confirmed at the club.
Contact tracing is underway and the people concerned are in isolation.
The data suggested an average of between 30 and 35 per cent of people are using masks when they travel (pictured, train crew on a Melbourne to Sydney train in July before borders closed)
Premier Gladys Berejiklian (pictured on Wednesday) reiterated that while masks are important in reducing the spread of COVID-19, they are a fourth line of defence
Premier Gladys Berejiklian reiterated that while masks are important in reducing the spread of COVID-19, they are a fourth line of defence.
She urged people in southwest and western Sydney, which are linked to several clusters, to come forward for testing and to maintain social distancing.
‘We are concerned there was community transmission we haven’t picked up in those parts of Sydney and if we don’t, those strains or sources we haven’t identified could take off,’ she told Seven’s Sunrise program on Friday.
She also noted health advice this week says people are more likely to get COVID-19 from someone they know.
Meanwhile, a NSW special commission of inquiry’s report into the ill-fated disembarkation of the Ruby Princess cruise ship is set to be handed to the state government.
The Ruby Princess, which docked at Sydney on March 19, has been linked to hundreds of cases and more than 20 coronavirus-related deaths across Australia.