NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has confirmed 177 new Covid cases were recorded overnight.
It comes as 172 new infections were announced yesterday, making it the worst day since the current outbreak began.
Ms Berejiklian has finally confirmed that Greater Sydney will remain under lockdown for an extra month.
At the moment, the lockdown is set to lift on August 28.
Three extra LGAs – Parramatta, Campbelltown and Georges River – have been added to NSW's red zone list.
It means people in those areas will no longer be permitted to leave for work, unless they have an exemption.
Ms Berejiklian has also confirmed reports Year 12 students from those eight lockdown zones will be given access to vaccines.
The doses will be diverted from NSWs regions.
In-class learning will resume in two weeks on August 16.
At least 46 out of today's 177 new cases were in the community for at least part of their infectious periods.
That's a number authorities will be looking at very carefully when weighing up when to reopen.
Sadly, NSW's Covid death toll has risen yet again.
The latest victim was a woman in her 90s.
She died on Tuesday in Liverpool Hospital.
It brings the death toll linked to the latest outbreak to 11.
The Premier has given a grim warning to those who continue to visit family members outside their own household.
She said those who think they're doing their relatives a favour by dropping by could actually be signing their "death sentence".
She gave the example of a funeral which resulted in 45 out of 50 attendees later testing positive.
Areas that will be freed first
Ms Berejiklian has hinted that some parts of the state might be freed from lockdown earlier than others.
They include areas outside Sydney.
"If in the next few weeks we find parts of greater metropolitan Sydney like Wollongong, Shellharbour, are doing better, we will do the things we have done in Orange to allow communities to live more freely but it is up to all of us to make sure we do the right thing and speak up when others are not doing the right thing," she said.
NSW yesterday reported 172 community Covid cases - a new record for the current Sydney outbreak.
Of those cases, 60 were infectious while in the community.
It was widely reported this morning that NSW's crisis cabinet reached the decision to extend the lockdown last night.
Nine News' Chris O'Keefe tweeted before the announcement that Georges River and Parramatta would join the growing list of Sydney local government areas where residents are unable to leave – even for work – without a valid exemption.
Infectious diseases expert Peter Collignon told the Today programme this morning that restrictions would remain in place in NSW "for at least a couple of months" – and maybe even longer.
Professor Collignon also said the state needed to get cases down to around 20 per day or less with most of those in isolation for most of their infectious period before freedom could be achieved.
Ship off Qld coast with 19 infected crew
Queensland today recorded one new locally acquired Covid-19 case and 19 cases aboard a cargo ship off the state's coast.
The bulk carrier entered the Torres Strait from the Philippines on Monday and alerted authorities to a majority of crew on board being sick, Queensland's chief health officer Jeannette Young said.
Queensland Health provided nurses to test those on the ship, with 19 of the 21 crew members returning positive tests on Tuesday night.
The ship is currently heading towards Weipa in the state's far north where six of the crew members will be transported to Brisbane for treatment.
The remaining staff will stay on the boat for maintenance purposes.
More good news for Victoria
Victorians have woken up to freedom this morning after the state's fifth lockdown lifted at midnight.
And in further good news, only eight new infections were confirmed overnight, with all in isolation during their infectious periods.