As the concerns around Omicron grow, one state has reinstated border rules for people coming from NSW, after the state recorded its sixth case of the variant.

South Australia has reimposed border restrictions against people arriving from NSW after the state recorded 18 new cases of coronavirus.

Premier Steven Marshall announced the change in a press conference this afternoon.

“Effective later this afternoon we will be putting further requirements for people coming from NSW to have a test on arrival,” he said.

“This is another way that we will be protecting ourselves. What I can say is we’ll be monitoring the situation, particularly in NSW, extraordinarily carefully.

“We have been looking at it on a daily basis.”

The premier admitted the state was never going to be able to keep Delta at bay, as it worked to open borders before Christmas.

“The reality is you can’t keep Delta out indefinitely,” he said.

“The cases were inevitable, and now we are responding.”

NSW has at least six confirmed cases of the Omicron variant, dubbed a variant of concern late last week after it was identified in southern Africa.

Mr Marshall said he was “very concerned” about the Omicron variant and referred to examples of other countries bringing back quarantine as a reason why South Australia was clamping down.

“We remain very concerned about Omicron variant, this was really only discovered by the WHO in recent days and we have hundreds of cases now globally,” he said.

“We don’t know much about this and we are concerned that some jurisdictions in Australia don’t have the 14-day requirement for isolation and quarantine that we have in South Australia.

“You would have noted that very recently we went back from seven days back to 14 days for all international arrivals until we get more information about the Omicron variant.”

The state’s chief health officer Professor Nicola Spurrier advised South Australians it would be unlikely they’d be able to get in touch with all close and casual contacts.

“As we get more cases in the state, I want to make it clear that we will not be able to ring absolutely all close contacts,” she told reporters.

“We will do the very best we can but we need to be focusing the work of the communicable disease control branch and the contact tracers on what are the most critical issues.

“ As the Premier said … if you haven‘t got vaccinated, you really need to get on with that now.

“I know that for some people, they are fearful about getting the vaccine but it is clear that we have Covid in our state now and not unexpectedly.”

The state saw a massive jump in cases today, after recording 18 new infections reported in the past 24 hours.

Of those cases, 16 are linked to an event that recently took place in Adelaide, with health officials branding the outbreak the Norwood cluster.

The other two cases are from interstate travellers.

“All of those cases will have quite a number of people that will have been close contacts. So there is a lot of work for our team to do in terms of interviewing all of those cases and getting all of the close contacts,” Ms Spurrier said.

It is understood the event was attended by around 50 people.

As of 9am this morning, there were 210 close contacts in quarantine, with that number likely to increase.

She said it was “absolutely vital” for people to go out and get tested, even if they have the mildest of symptoms.

South Australia cluster comes nine days after borders reopened

South Australia reopened its domestic borders on November 23 to fully vaccinated residents from all states and territories.

More than 30,000 people from NSW, Victoria and the ACT were pre-approved to enter the state from November 23 after being locked out for months.

Speaking about the plans to reopen the border last month, Mr Marshall said South Australia was “good to go” and ready for an influx of people.

“We are expecting a very significant increase in the amount of testing which we envisage will need to be done in SA,” he said.

“We are good to go. We’ve made all the necessary precautions, now we need to have Australians continue to get vaccinated as we head towards the end of year.”

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