Man in his 30s dies from Covid
Dubbo becomes latest area to head into lockdown
Three LGAs identified with rising case numbers
The number of daily Covid-19 cases in NSW has remained above 300 for the second consecutive day – another grim first for the state's coronavirus crisis.
NSW recorded recorded 344 locally acquired cases while a further two deaths were announced, including a man in his 30s at Northern Beaches Hospital.
Tuesday brought 356 new cases – the state's highest total of local daily cases.
Dubbo the latest region to be locked down
Dubbo is the latest area to be placed into lockdown as the state's outbreak continues to spread into the regions.
The local government area will enter a snap lockdown from 1.00pm following the emergence of two cases, Premier Gladys Berejiklian confirmed.
One of the cases emerged at Dubbo West Public School which has since been closed.
Ms Berejiklian said case rates in Fairfield and Canterbury-Bankstown local government areas were continuing to drop.
However she identified three new local government areas, Bayside, Burwood and Inner West, as areas where cases were beginning to rise.
"We don't want to include you in at those local governments of concern but we may have to do if case numbers don't at least stabilise or start going down," she said.
Chief Heath Officer Dr Kerry Chant said there was a "greater response" from the public by alerting certain LGAs about rising infections instead of imposing blanket restrictions across the entire city.
Nine LGAs, Blacktown, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield, Georges River, Liverpool, Parramatta and some suburbs of Penrith, are currently under tighter restrictions.
"It is very hard for the community if we are talking about cases in an area where there hasn't been any cases," Dr Chant said.
However she clarified previous comments stating there will be no easing of restrictions before August 28.
September and October to be 'most challenging months yet'
Ms Berejiklian said September and October would be “the most challenging of months for New South Wales” as the state targets 70 per cent of the population vaccinated.
The premier reiterated her plan to ease restrictions for areas with low case rates and higher vaccination rates.
“There will be opportunities… for them to do more than they do today,” she said.
Ms Berejiklian said it "does not look like" the Hunter region will come out of lockdown after 14 new cases were recorded overnight.
However the premier said Sydney residents likely wouldn't be back to anything like "normal" until November when vaccination rates are sufficiently high.
"At the current pace, we will hit that [70 per cent mark] at the end of October, 80 per cent towards the end of November.
"According to the Doherty Institute report, that is when life gets back to normal," she said. "That is when we have a different approach to Covid."
NSW surpassed 4.5 million vaccine doses administered on Wednesday, however August's current rate suggests the state meeting Ms Berejiklian's six million-dose target by the end of the month remains in the balance.
There has now been 34 deaths from the outbreak which began on June 16. The man who died from the virus in his 30s had underlying health issues, Ms Berejiklian said.
The other victim announced on Wednesday was a man in his 90s from southwest Sydney.
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