- NSW Health started a research program to test sewage for traces of COVID-19
- Initial samples collected at the Perisher sewage plant returned a positive result
- NSW Health has urged anyone in the area with flu-like symptoms to get tested
- NSW recorded 18 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, with six under investigation
Skiers have been warned to keep an eye out for flu-like symptoms after COVID-19 was found in sewage at Perisher.
New South Wales recorded 18 new coronavirus infections on Thursday and six of the cases remain under investigation.
NSW Health said they recently started a research program to test sewage for traces of COVID-19 across the state.
Initial samples collected at the Perisher sewage treatment plant on Wednesday July 22 returned a positive result for the presence of COVID-19.
'Further sampling and analysis is required to assess the significance of this initial positive result,' NSW Health said in a statement.
'The positive sewage result can be due to shedding of the virus by someone who may have previously had the illness, with the virus 'shedding' through their system for up to four weeks later.'
There have been no confirmed coronavirus cases identified in Perisher or Thredbo to date but NSW Health is asking visitors to the area to get tested if they have any symptoms.
'Anyone feeling unwell – even with the mildest of symptoms such as a runny nose or scratchy throat – must seek testing and self-isolate until they get the result,' the statement said.
'Stay at home, and do not go to work or catch public transport until you are cleared of COVID-19.'
Of Thursday's new cases, two are linked to the funeral gatherings cluster, four are associated with the Thai Rock Wetherill Park cluster and four are connected to The Apollo restaurant in Potts Point.
There were two positive test results in returned travellers in hotel quarantine. Six cases remain under investigation.
NSW Health urges anyone who lives in or have visited hotspot areas in the past two weeks to get tested if they start displaying the mildest of COVID-19 symptoms.
They include Potts Point, Carnes Hill shops, Prestons, Bonnyrigg, Wetherill Park, Mt Pritchard, Bankstown City Plaza, Cabramatta and popular ski resort Perisher in southern NSW.
About 27,147 tests were conducted across the state on Wednesday, up from 18,543 on Tuesday.
There are 100 patients in hospital with the virus, including five in intensive care.