Updated Aug 11, 2020 - Health

New Zealand reports first local coronavirus cases for 102 days

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern makes an exit after a press conference at Parliament on July 22
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern after a press conference at Parliament on July 22 in Wellington, New Zealand. Photo: Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images

AUCKLAND, New Zealand — Auckland is locking down and the rest of New Zealand faces lesser restrictions for 72 hours after four members of the same family tested positive for COVID-19, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced Tuesday.

Why it matters: It's the first cases not in managed isolation for 102 days, Ardern said at a news briefing.

"Together we have beaten the virus before. We can do so again."
— Ardern

What to expect: From noon Wednesday until midnight Friday in Auckland, in-person school lessons will be closed to all but the children of essential workers, non-essential businesses can open, but there must be no physical interaction with customers and the Aucklanders are advised to work from home.

  • Those who outside of Auckland will not be allowed to travel to New Zealand's most populous city for the lockdown period.
  • Social distancing measures will be reintroduced and larger gatherings, such as for events like funerals, will also be limited across the country.

What happened: NZ's top health official Ashley Bloomfield added that a young child was among those to test positive. The family member who initially tested positive for the virus has no history of overseas travel, he said.

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