SAFEWORK inspectors spent the weekend in Tamworth combing pubs, clubs and restaurants with police, teaming up to ensure businesses were following COVIDSafe rules.
No fines were issued in Tamworth, Gunnedah and Narrabri, but some pubs in Armidale were "reminded" by police about the numbers they could have inside venues as part of social distancing measures.
Two SafeWork inspectors went door-to-door of licensed venues in Narrabri, Gunnedah and did the rounds of Tamworth on Saturday afternoon, speaking to publicans and staff and inspecting COVIDSafe registers, and measures in the venues for customer safety.
Oxley Detective Acting Inspector Matt O'Hehir told the Leader police had carried out more than 60 separate inspections and checks across the weekend - it addition to the SafeWork inspections.
"Over the weekend there were no breaches detected and police are continuing to carry out compliance checks of self-isolation orders issued to people," he said.
"We were encouraged by the efforts of licensees to adhere to the new regulations that came into force last Friday.
"We will continue to proactively work with licensed premises and carry out patrols to ensure everyone is up to speed, and compliance checks will continue this week."
Some licensees reported angry or abusive patrons who refused to follow, or questioned the rules.
"We encourage people to understand the rules that licensed venues have to comply with; know the rules before you go out because venues are limited by numbers as part of the COVIDSafe regulations," Detective O'Hehir said.
New England Detective Inspector Roger Best said no fines or breaches were detected in the New England, despite plenty of licensing police on patrol.
"Police carried out a number of checks of venues and some of the pubs we went in and reminded them of the numbers as they neared the new capacity restrictions," he said.
"There were no breaches but a lot of businesses have come a long way and are working within the restrictions and the social distancing guidelines, so we will continue to monitor and enforce the rules."
Last week, an Armidale pub copped a $5000 fine after it was found flouting the rules with too many people inside.
The new SafeWork inspectors mean businesses can be audited or face compliance checks - whether it's uniformed or undercover - from NSW Police; SafeWork; Liquor & Gaming NSW; Local Government Environmental Health Officers; Fair Trading officers; and public health officials.
Any business found breaching Public Health Orders faces a $5,000 fine; while patrons face $1000 infringements.
If a business is caught a second time, it can be forced to shut for a week; while a third offence for non-compliance will see it shutdown for up to a month.