brisbane-news

Queensland imposes state border restrictions from midnight Wednesday due to coronavirus crisis

Updated

March 24, 2020 14:11:49

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says the state’s border will only remain open to freight and essential travel after announcing restrictions on border crossing from midnight tomorrow.

Key points:

  • Queensland’s border will close from midnight tomorrow with only freight and essential travel allowed
  • Some residents who work on the other side of the border may be given stickers for their cars to indicate they’re allowed to cross
  • Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says the police and government officials will be enforcing the shut down

Residents along the Tweed and southern Gold Coast reacted with anger and confusion when the announcement was made yesterday.

“Unless you’re returning home to Queensland or coming to Queensland for an essential purpose like work or a medical appointment, or freight issues, then the border is closed to you,” the Premier said

“Let me make it very clear, Queenslanders should stay in Queensland, people in New South Wales should stay in New South Wales and people in Victoria should stay in Victoria.

“We do not want people coming to Queensland to have a holiday break. This is not holiday break season. This is the season to stay at home with your family,” she said.

“The Chief Medical Officer has advised me there are serious health issues of people coming from other states to Queensland.

“Now, that is a big problem, because if we have people who are coming here, who have the coronavirus, we do not have the resources to spend on contact tracing all of those people and checking up on where they are staying under a 14-day so quarantine.”

Queensland state disaster coordinator Steve Gollschewski said compassion would be shown but police had the power to fine and restrict access.

“If someone lives in the Tweed and works in Queensland, they will be allowed to come through,” he said.

“If people choose to do the wrong thing, police always have the powers at their disposal to deal with poor behaviour.

“I think there’s been publication around the fines that are for non-compliance with the directions under the Act.”

‘Nobody can sustain this’

Coolangatta cafe owner Debbie Newman lives less than a kilometre away from the border.

“It all feels quite surreal, there’s changes by the hour,” she said.

She said while she’s attempted to maintain the business through prepaid online sales and advertising on social media, the outlook wasn’t good.

“I don’t know how long this is going to impact us for but I would think that nobody would be able to sustain this,” Ms Newman said.

Topics:

epidemics-and-pandemics,

covid-19,

federal—state-issues,

health-policy,

travel-health-and-safety,

federal—state-issues,

government-and-politics,

diseases-and-disorders,

infectious-diseases-other,

respiratory-diseases,

brisbane-4000,

qld

First posted

March 24, 2020 13:32:36


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