36 suburbs across New South Wales have been places on high alert after sewage surveillance detected traces of COVID-19 on the Central Coast.

The news comes after one case was recorded in the region following the Avalon cluster in Sydney earlier this week.

According to NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant, the virus was spotted at the Kincumber treatment plant in Gosford on Monday.

“In relation to Central Coast residents, they’re being asked to get tested if they have even the mildest of COVID symptoms,” Dr Chant said.

“That message goes for us across the state. That’s because the state sewage surveillance program has detected traces of the virus in Kincumber servicing the Gosford area in which around 140,000 people reside.”

Anyone in the following suburbs was been urged to come forward for testing following the sewage detection.

Niagara Park, Narara, Lisarow, Wyoming, West Gosford, North Gosford, Somersby, Kariong, Point Clare, Tascott, Koolewong, Springfield, Erina, Terrigal, Wamberal, Forresters Beach, North Avoca, Avoca Beach, Copacabana, MacMasters Beach, Bouddi, Green Point, Yattalunga, Kincumber, Kincumber South, Bensville, Saratoga, Davistown, Empire Bay, St Huberts Island, Daleys Point, Killcare, Killcare Heights, Hardys Bay, Pretty Beach and Wagstaffe.

Despite no Central Coast venues being listed in the NSW Health website’s list of contact points, the chief health officer is still urging residents to be cautious.

“We are aware that there is a COVID-positive case in the Central Coast as well as a case from western Sydney who visited Avoca while infectious last weekend, so there is an explanation for this but we want to take a cautious approach,” Dr Chant said.

“Please be on high alert and get tested if you’ve got the most minimal of symptoms.”

The news comes just days before Christmas as the Avalon cluster puts a dampener on festive gatherings across the state and the country as a whole.