New Zealand imposes new coronavirus restrictions as it records first case in 102 days


New Zealand has reintroduced coronavirus restrictions in parts of the country after new locally transmitted cases were recorded.


Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern confirmed four new locally transmitted coronavirus cases on Tuesday night, and announced that Auckland, will temporarily see level three restrictions introduced for three days starting from midday on Wednesday.


Local residents are being told by Ms Ardern to "stay home to stop the spread" of the disease.


All four of the cases were found within one household in South Auckland according to New Zealand's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. He added that none of the new cases had recently travelled outside of New Zealand.


Schools and nurseries will close to pupils apart from the children of key workers, while gatherings of more than ten people will be restricted.


Bars and restaurants are also being told to close, while travel into and out of Auckland will be restricted to those returning home to the city, or those leaving who live elsewhere.


"We have been preparing for that time, and that time is now," said Dr Bloomfield adding that the "health system is well prepared."


Police are due to issue further information on the use of roadblocks around Auckland on Wednesday.


Announcing the restrictions will be in place for three days until midnight on Friday, Ms Ardern said: "One of the most important lessons we've learned from overseas is the need to go hard and go early.


She added: "These three days will give us time to assess the situation, gather information, make sure we have widespread contact tracing so we can find out more about how this case arose and make decisions on how to respond to it once we have further information."


The rest of New Zealand will be moved to "Level Two" restrictions from midday on Wednesday, Ms Ardern announced.


Meanwhile, social distancing must also be practised at hospitality businesses, while public venues such as museums, libraries and pools can open if they comply with public health measures and ensure one meter physical distancing and record keeping.

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