NSW’s top police official has said he expects coronavirus restrictions like masks and crowd limits to remain for the whole year.
Police Commissioner Mick Fuller doesn‘t believe we will get rid of the virus precautions before the end of the year.
“I can imagine that 2021 will be one where health orders will be in place and NSW Police will be enforcing them for most of the year,” he told the 2GB radio station.
“We need to continue to consolidate on the great work we did in 2020 until we get a safe vaccine.”
The first shots to protect against the coronavirus are expected to be administered in mid-February, but health authorities don’t expect it will immediately lead to a return to normalcy.
Community transmission will be still be a concern while officials work to get enough people vaccinated.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has previously indicated that any changes to restrictions in the state will require virus experts to keep on top of contact tracing.
She said last week that any rule changes were “unlikely” while virus experts were still “mopping up” unlinked community cases.
Federal chief medical officer Brendan Murphy told the ABC on Monday that Australia’s borders with the rest of the world were unlikely to open up anytime soon despite vaccine hopes.
“The answer is probably no … Even if we have a lot of the population vaccinated, we don‘t know whether that will prevent transmission of the virus,” he said.