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Australians welcome 2021 with fireworks on empty Sydney Harbour


#Sydney has rung in 2021 with a shortened fireworks display on a vacated harbour themed on love and unity amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The city largely banned crowds for its world-renowned pyrotechnic display on #New #Year’s #Eve, while #Melbourne’s fireworks were cancelled weeks ago.

#Canberra, #Brisbane and #Adelaide have also cancelled their fireworks.

#Sydneysiders were asked to stay home and watch the fireworks on television this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

AAP

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The restrictions ensured the #Sydney foreshore, including popular vantage points such as the #Opera #House and The #Rocks, were on #Thursday night deserted, with no revellers or firework-watchers in sight.

The lively seven-minute fireworks display at midnight carried themes of love, unity and solidarity amid COVID-19, which has killed 909 #Australians to date.

The #Harbour #Bridge before midnight was lit up with the words “we are one”.

#Sydneysiders mostly watched the fireworks on television, with a permit system established for the CBD only for those with pre-existing hospitality bookings.

#Boats were permitted on #Sydney #Harbour with strict guidelines, while the children-friendly fireworks at 9pm did not go ahead.

The Sydney CBD was empty ahead of the fireworks as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.

The #Sydney CBD was empty ahead of the fireworks as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.

AAP

#Residents in #Greater #Sydney, including #Wollongong, the #Central #Coast and #Blue #Mountains, were restricted to hosting five visitors in their homes, including children. The limit for outdoor gatherings was reduced to 30.

#Backyard fireworks could be heard going off on #Sydney’s northern beaches, currently grappling with a 144-person COVID-19 cluster and a stay-at-home order that will linger in some suburbs until at least #January 9.

#And as midnight passed, backyard fireworks could be heard all across #Sydney.

#Central #Melbourne was also mostly vacated on #Thursday night, with a smattering of people in restaurants but parks and public spaces deserted.

The #Victorian government urged people not to head into the #Melbourne CBD on #Thursday night unless they had a hospitality booking.

The city’s new eight-person outbreak prompted authorities to cut indoor gatherings from 30 people to 15 from 5pm on #New #Year’s #Eve.

#Wearing masks indoors was also made mandatory.

#South #Australians may have no more than 50 people at their house – whether indoors or outdoors – for #New #Year’s #Eve celebrations. A maximum of 200 people will be permitted at private outdoor gatherings.

#Fireworks in #Hobart went ahead but, like in #Sydney, people were urged not to gather on the waterfront.

#Darwin residents needed to register and wear wristbands to attend the city’s two fireworks displays.

#In marked contrast to the rest of the country, #Perth’s celebrations are to be close to normal, with two fireworks displays.

#People in #Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others.

#Please check the relevant guidelines for your state or territory: NSW, #Victoria, #Queensland, #Western #Australia, #South #Australia, #Northern #Territory, ACT, #Tasmania.

#If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, stay home and arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the #Coronavirus #Health #Information #Hotline on 1800 020 080. #News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus.



[ source link ]
https://www.sbs.com.au/news/australians-welcome-2021-with-fireworks-on-empty-sydney-harbour

##Australians #fireworks #empty ##Sydney ##Harbour

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