Almost 1900 breaches of COVID-19 restrictions were recorded in the Illawarra during three months of this year's lockdown, new data shows.
The NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research figures show police took action on 1880 incidents in the Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama local government areas from July to September.
Most were in Wollongong, where police issued 1420 fines, court attendance notices or other measures, such as a warning.
There were 421 recorded breaches in Shellharbour, and 39 in Kiama.
Almost 1700 health order infractions in the Illawarra were met with fines, while 148 people were ordered to attend court.
The breaches during those three months represented almost 94 per cent of all violations recorded in the region since the start of the pandemic, which numbered just above 2000.
Lockdown began for the whole of Greater Sydney - including Wollongong and Shellharbour - on June 26, with restrictions expanded to regional areas such as Kiama in mid August.
In a statewide study of COVID breaches, the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research found NSW Police issued almost 36,600 penalties in July and August alone.
BOCSAR found just over one-third of breaches involved non-essential travel.
Failure to wear a mask accounted for 30 per cent, while visiting other households made up 14 per cent.
Almost 89 per cent of breaches were dealt with by fine.
Most alleged offenders were male, at 74 per cent, and aged between 18 and 39.
Half had offended in some way within the previous five years.
Most Greater Sydney residents said in a survey that they complied with the health orders.
The study found that the data suggested increased enforcement activity in certain areas and certain times was a major factor driving the recorded breaches.
"Interestingly the study suggests that compliance was greater in LGAs of concern possibly because the COVID-19 risk was higher or possibly due to more enforcement," BOCSAR executive director Jackie Fitzgerald said.