What pandemic? Hundreds of revellers in Santa hats throw an epic Christmas Day beach party in Sydney despite calls to avoid large gatherings – sparking fears it will become a ‘COVID-19 incubator’
- Riot squad called in to help police break up crowd of Bronte Beach revellers
- Hundreds gathered at the popular beach in Sydney’s east on Christmas Day
- Revellers seen dancing in massive group with little social distancing in place
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Riot police have been forced to break up a massive crowd of Christmas Day revellers partying at a popular Sydney beach.
Extraordinary scenes were captured at Bronte Beach in the city’s east on Friday afternoon, where hundreds of Sydneysiders gathered to celebrate Christmas with friends, despite a coronavirus outbreak which continues to spread across the city.
Footage has emerged showing revellers at Bronte wearing festive Santa hats, dancing closely together and on each others’ shoulders in a large crowd, as the Sydney outbreak grew to 118 confirmed cases.
No face masks could be seen and social distancing was non-existent.
Hundreds of Christmas revellers gathered at Bronte Beach on Friday for a massive party
‘Not sure these peeps got the COVID memo,’ a concerned local captioned a video of the disturbing scenes.
Another added: ‘I’m not the Christmas grinch and I don’t begrudge anyone having a good time after the year we’ve had but am I missing something? How come only 10 people in a household but over 200 people close together at Bronte?’
Police are seen trying to disperse the massive crowd and ordering revellers to move along in another video posted on Instagram.
NSW Police confirmed officers were called to Bronte at around 3pm and were assisted by the Public Order and Riot Squad.
‘Police were called to disperse a large crowd at the location,’ a spokeswoman told Daily Mail Australia.
Only 10 people are allowed to gather indoors however, up to 100 people can gather outside in Greater Sydney. It is believed there was more than 300 people celebrating together in Bronte.
Social distancing was non-existent at Bronte as crowds danced closely together
Revellers were seen packed closely together in a massive crowd and few masks in sight
Police remained at the scene on Friday night to keep a close eye on a handful of revellers who chose to stay.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard has slammed the group for potentially spreading the deadly disease.
‘I get the desire for youthful Christmas exuberance, but this is as irresponsible, ignorant and idiotic as it gets,’ he told the Daily Telegraph.
‘It’s a massive potential COVID-19 incubator.’
Premier Gladys Berejiklian issued a desperate plea for Sydneysiders to restrict their movements in public over the Christmas long weekend and to avoid the Boxing Day sales on Saturday.
Hundreds of revellers partied at Bronte Beach until police brought festivities to an abrupt halt
The outbreak now sits at 118 total cases, 108 of which are associated with the Avalon cluster on the northern beaches.
‘We’d prefer it if people did not go to the CBD tomorrow because then you have people from all over Sydney coming to the one location and it only takes one or two cases for it to then spread everywhere else – and we don’t want to see that happen,’ Ms Berejiklian said on Friday.
‘I cannot stress enough how urgent the people to reduce their mobility, not to undertake any activity unless they absolutely have to and please avoid the CBD where you can.