PLANE passengers arriving in Albury from Melbourne have been temperature tested as part of a beefed-up NSW response to COVID-19 cases in the capital.
The eight travellers were scanned and queried over their movements in Melbourne when their Regional Express flight landed on Friday afternoon.
The deployment of staff from the Murrumbidgee Local Health District and police to greet the plane was in response to a NSW public health order which outlaws people from declared COVID-19 hotspots in Melbourne crossing the Murray River.
Murray River police region Superintendent Paul Smith said officers in Albury and elsewhere along the border would be tasked with monitoring rogue Melburnians entering NSW to meet the order.
"I know as a Border community it certainly impacts us, a lot of us have family in Melbourne and in some of those suburbs," he said.
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"However, this is obviously for the community safety, any of us who thought COVID was over, it is certainly not, and we need to adhere by the ministerial directions for our community safety."
Superintendent Smith said the police would not be setting up checkpoints, but had access to technology allowing them to identify where in Victoria a vehicle was registered.
Fines of up to $11,000 and six months in jail can be applied to those breaching the rules in entering NSW.
Two XPT passengers with ties to hotspot suburbs have been caught in Sydney after travelling from Melbourne on separate services over the past two days.
NSW transport officials have now introduced checking en route from Melbourne.
"To keep customers and staff COVID safe, additional measures including screening will be carried out at Southern Cross station, Seymour station, Benalla station and Wangaratta station before customers board the XPT service to Sydney," a Transport for NSW spokeswoman said.
"These additional measures will be in place to further support NSW Health's screening point at Central Station to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
"These measures will result in anyone who does not pass the screening process or is from a hotspot being turned away."
Murrumbidgee health is working with Albury-Wodonga Health and transport providers to ensure passengers arriving from Melbourne have been screened before departure or on arrival in the Riverina.
However, health district chief executive Jill Ludford said "it's unrealistic to think we can plug absolutely every hole with people travelling into our region from Victoria".
She said she had directed her staff not to travel to Melbourne and had the same message for others.
"I would actually urge people not to go to Melbourne....because it just heightens their risk of exposure," Ms Ludford said, noting the lack of symptoms in the early stages of COVID-19 was a big concern.
"If people go to Melbourne for a weekend and they come home and go to work and then they get sick a few days later, well that's when we really are in strife."