There were no results yet from sequencing of a third case linked to the Auckland cluster, all members of the same family, which emerged Sunday and prompted Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to order a three-day lockdown in Auckland.
Following the announcement that Auckland will go into an Alert Level 3 lockdown from midnight tonight (2359hrs Sunday February 14), America's Cup Events Ltd has declared that the America's Cup Regatta, the Prada Cup and the Event will shut down for three days.
People jog past a social distancing sign on the first day of New Zealand's new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) safety measure that mandates wearing of a mask on public transport, in Auckland, New Zealand, August 31, 2020.
Three cases were registered earlier on Sunday and they pertain to a mother, a father, and their daughter from South Auckland, who have already followed the correct procedures by self-isolating when they developed symptoms.
Yesterday's cases, which are a woman who works doing laundry for worldwide aircrew and her family, have been confirmed with the new, more transmissible United Kingdom variant of the virus.
Overall, New Zealand has recorded just 25 COVID-related deaths since the beginning of the pandemic out of its population of five million.
The Ministry said contact tracing had identified 10 close contacts outside the household.
1 NEWS politics editor Jess Mutch McKay explains the steps officials have taken ahead of the latest community cases.
The priority was for close contacts and casual plus contacts to be tested so we can understand any risk in the community.
The worker had returned a negative test result the following day but a subsequent review found it was a "false negative". Officials said the mother works at a catering company that does laundry for airlines, and officials are investigating whether there is a link to infected passengers.
The restrictions will last until Wednesday night, while the rest of New Zealand has been placed under level two restrictions, which allows for more flexibility of movement.
Under alert level three restrictions, for instance, residents can only travel around their local area for permitted reasons, such as shopping or exercise.
"The other possibility is that it's global airline crew. they also do the laundry of a couple of worldwide airline crew".
One is that the virus came from a transit passenger, while another is that it came from global aircrew, who in some cases have their uniforms cleaned at the facility where the infected woman works, she told Radio New Zealand Monday. "And so, that is also one of the possibilities".
It was still possible - but unlikely - the new cases had come from an MIQ case which hadn't been sequenced, said Ardern.