Sun-seekers have flocked to Bondi Beach for Labour Day as the mercury in Sydney on Monday soared to 31C.
Sydneysiders young and old hit the water at the famous beach to celebrate the public holiday in New South Wales as the state confirmed its tenth day in a row without any coronavirus community transmission.
Only one case has been diagnosed in a returned overseas traveller in hotel quarantine, but Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the state’s residents could not afford to let their guard down.
‘Until there’s a vaccine and a treatment, we need to treat everybody as if they potentially have this virus,’ he told Sunrise.
‘Complacency could turn this thing upside down very quickly.’
Health officials have also raised concerns about the low testing numbers for the virus in NSW – with just 4,789 tests being carried out over the last 24-hour reporting period.
Sun’s up, fun’s up! Bondi Beach heats up as crowds descend on the famous beach during New South Wales’ public holiday Monday
Soaking in the rays: Locals young and old soaked in the rays at the iconic Sydney beach as New South Wales had its tenth day in a row without any COVID-19 community transmission
Funday Monday! Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the state’s residents could not afford to let their guard down despite the non-existent community transmission rates in NSW
Northerly winds are responsible for Sydney’s long weekend hot weather.
‘The final day of the long weekend will be the warmest with temperatures reaching 29C in Sydney and 33C in Blacktown and Penrith, about seven degrees above average,’ Weatherzone’s Felix Levesque said.
A drop in temperature will hit the city after the sun sets on Monday with a cool southerly wind reaching the city.
The cooling event in addition to a low-pressure trough will lead to a string of chilly days and rain for the remainder of the week.
The bureau said: ‘Northerly winds ahead of a low pressure trough bringing another warm and mostly sunny day to Sydney, ahead of a gusty southerly change along the coast late this evening, and a cooler, cloudy though mostly dry Tuesday’.
Waverley Council, which includes Bondi, Coogee, and Tamarama beaches, released a warning for prospective beachgoers amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Making the most of it! A beachgoer clutches a pair of trainers as she walks along the surf at Bondi Beach on Monday
It’s chock-a-block! A packed Bondi Beach pictured on Monday. Only one case has been diagnosed in a returned overseas traveller in hotel quarantine in NSW in the past day
‘If you’re planning on heading down to the beach to cool off as the weather warms up this long weekend, make sure you stay COVID safe by social distancing and limiting gatherings to 20 people or less,’ the council said.
Brisbane will reach a maximum of 27C over the three-day break with temperatures remaining warm for the remainder of the week.
NSW, South Australia, and the Australian Capital Territory have a three day weekend with Labour Day on Monday, while Queensland also has Monday off to celebrate the Queen’s Birthday.
The burst of summer was also felt in Melbourne over the weekend before a cool change swept the city on Sunday night.
Crowds pack into Bondi Beach on Monday. The burst of summer was also felt in Melbourne before a cool change swept through Australia’s second most populated city
Premier Daniel Andrews pleaded for Melburnians to ‘stay the course’ after large groups at beaches and parks flouted coronavirus restrictions in recent days.
‘We are so, so close. Let’s not any of us do anything that might undermine the very positive numbers,’ he told reporters on Sunday.
‘It’s sunny, yes, and people love to go to the beach when it’s sunny but there’s a global pandemic on.
‘Surely, there’s a greater urge to see this thing, to defeat it and to have a normal summer and have a COVID normal Christmas and 2021.’
Surfers walk past the rolling waves on Monday as the mercury rose to 31C. Health officials have also raised concerns about the low testing numbers for the virus in NSW – with just 4,789 tests being carried out over the last 24-hour reporting period
Beachgoers also flocked to Coogee where hundreds of sunbakers were making the most of the unseasonably warm weather
Police patrols continued at St Kilda Beach after large groups gathered on Friday, raising concerns that such behaviour could trigger another outbreak.
Mr Andrews warned he could be forced to extend the 5km travel bubble for metropolitan Melbourne if residents continue to hit the beach.
‘I can’t put a timeline on it but those rules serve a really important purpose and they’ll be in place for as long as that purpose is relevant and proportionate — the benefit is relevant and proportionate — to the challenge we face,’ he said.
Sydneysiders are sweltering through Labour Day, with a maximum of 31C forecast for Monday’s public holiday. Pictured: Beachgoers at Cronulla Beach on Sunday
‘There will be a time when that (5km rule) can come off, but exactly when that is — or it might be extended — when that is we can’t be certain now.’
Health figures released on Sunday show the 14-day rolling average of daily case diagnoses up to Saturday is 11.9 in Melbourne and 0.2 in regional Victoria, up from 0.1 on Saturday.
If Victoria hits a rolling 14-day average below five and a two-week total of below five mystery cases it will move to the third step of reopening by October 19.
There are 241 active cases in Victoria, with 91 in aged care facilities and three in regional Victoria.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews warned he could be forced to extend the 5km travel bubble for metropolitan Melbourne if residents continue to hit the beach. Pictured: Locals at St Kilda on Saturday
Two people pose for a selfie while enjoying the sun at St Kilda Beach on Friday
Melburnians catch up at a local park as the weather warms up during COVID-19 on Saturday
Police patrol St Kilda Beach during the coronavirus pandemic in Melbourne on Saturday
Melbourne reached 29.5C on Sunday, while Walpeup, in Victoria’s north-west, hit 37.1C.
But the Bureau of Meterology advised Victorians to brace for a cool and wet change as they headed into the beginning of the week.
‘Get ready for the change! A rainband currently over the SW is heading east and will bring rain and cool weather across Victoria tomorrow,’ the bureau said on Sunday.
The bureau said the rainband brought 15-25mm totals to the south-west overnight and central/eastern parts of the state should expect 5-15mm for the rest of Monday.
Melbourne is forecast to reach a maximum of 14C on Monday.
Beachgoers are seen scattered across the sand at Curl Curl, on Sydney’s Northern Beaches, on Saturday