Three cruise ships that unloaded thousands of passengers at Sydney Harbour last week have been linked to more than 300 new cases of coronavirus in the country.
The total number of confirmed cases in Australia soared to 3,050 on Friday following an overnight spike in NSW and Victoria.
Health officials say the majority of infections have been acquired overseas or local transmission from contact with a confirmed case or a known cluster.
A spike in cases has also been attributed to four vessels that were controversially allowed to unload thousands of passengers at Sydney Harbour despite the government announcing a 30-day ban on cruise arrivals just the day before.
More than 300 coronavirus cases have been traced back to four cruise ships that docked in Sydney Harbour last week. Pictured: Passengers disembarking the Ovation of the Seas cruise ship on March 18
The Ruby Princess, Ovation of the Seas, Celebrity Solstice and Voyager of the Seas arrived in Sydney between March 18 and March 20.
Since then, at least 325 cases have emerged from those ships, as well three deaths.
OVATION OF THE SEAS
VOYAGER OF THE SEAS
In what has been described by officials as a 'monumental stuff up', more than 2,600 passengers were permitted to disembark the Ruby Princess without being screened for coronavirus.
The cruise ship is now responsible for at least 227 cases across the country, with 121 in NSW, 52 in Queensland, 44 in South Australia, at least eight in WA, and two in the Northern Territory.
One female passenger in her 70s, who was among the first on board to test positive for the virus, died in a Sydney hospital on Tuesday.
Two more coronavirus-deaths have since been recorded from passengers on the Voyager of the Seas and the Celebrity Solstice - taking the national death toll to 13.sonos sonos One (Gen 2) - Voice Controlled Smart Speaker with Amazon Alexa Built-in - Black read more