NSW residents impose voluntary lockdown

Sydney has a new look: eerily empty streets, abandoned beaches and silent cafes, as residents embrace a self-imposed lockdown amid Victoria’s second wave.

There have been reports of a significant drop in people attending pubs and clubs over the weekend, with venues saying they’ve even closed earlier due to lack of business.

Transport NSW officials have reported 60 per cent of passengers wearing masks — a significant increase in the wake of Victoria’s recent outbreak – while an on-duty Liquor and Gaming NSW COVID inspector has noted a “significant” drop in patron numbers across licensed venues since the Crossroads Hotel outbreak in NSW.

“After Crossroads, and then the restaurant at Potts Point, no one wants to go out,” the inspector told The Daily Telegraph.

RELATED: For all the latest coronavirus updates

Health authorities have been policing businesses to ensure social distancing and hygiene measures are maintained, but some businesses are already taking matters into their own hands.

Some major businesses across NSW have introduced face mask policies for staff and customers, moving ahead of government advice after more than a week of daily double-digit increases in coronavirus cases.

From Monday, hardware chain Bunnings will require all NSW staff to wear masks, and is asking customers to do the same. “We want to make sure we are doing everything we can,” said chief operations officer Deb Poole.

Supermarket giant Woolworths has already “strongly encouraged” its staff, executive team and customers in NSW and the ACT to wear face coverings in its stores, especially in declared hotspot zones.

Ovolo Hotels staff have also been asked to wear masks, and they are being provided to any Coles employees who wish to use them.

RELATED: Police crack down on people not wearing masks in VIC

Many are embracing self-imposed isolation after Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced on Saturday a further nother 397 new infections across the state and three deaths.

The consistent case surges have sparked reports Victoria will move into Stage 4 restrictions in the coming days.

Elsewhere, there were 418 cases recorded nationwide yesterday including 17 in New South Wales, two in the Northern Territory and one each in Queensland and South Australia.

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