Queensland border restrictions will be tightened across the state from midnight tonight to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Anyone who is not a Queensland resident or considered exempt from the restrictions will not be able to enter Queensland from 12.01am Friday, April 3, 2020.
People with an exemption must have a border pass before crossing the border. If you do not have a border pass then you will be turned around.
The new rules replace older rules that came into effect on March 26 which stated, anyone who arrives in Queensland from another State or must self-quarantine for 14 days.
Now anyone without a permit or Queensland residence will not be allowed in the state via road, air, sea or rail.
Freight transport services are exempt and will be allowed through without a border pass permit.
Police Minister Mark Ryan said strengthening border crossings and reducing the number of people travelling to Queensland would assist in minimising the spread of the virus.
“Now is not the time to be travelling interstate unnecessarily,” Minister Ryan said.
“Unless you are a Queensland resident or have an exemption such as you work here or are required to travel for medical reasons, or are involved in freight transportation, you will be turned away.
“We are giving people plenty of warning about the stronger border controls that are being put in place.
“We are doing this in the interests of community safety.”
Those living outside of Queensland who provide critical services to Queensland are considered exempt, this includes:
Essential health services
Transport of goods or freight including food
Critical maintenance/repair to critical infrastructure in Queensland
Federal, state or local government workers who are required to enter Queensland to perform official duties.
Additional restrictions will be in place for FIFO workers who live interstate and work in Queensland from 11.59am Saturday 4 April 2020. From that time, only critical resource sector employees will be allowed to enter Queensland from interstate to their work. These are employees critical to the ongoing operation of a resource activity or the resource supply chain and will be detailed on the Queensland Health website.
Queensland Health also announced that there are allowances on compassionate grounds, as well as specific exemptions for those living outside of Queensland who:
Are carers/relatives of dependant individuals in Queensland
Need to obtain essential medical treatment including visiting terminally ill relatives in Queensland
Are interstate boarding school students where school is closed
Are required to comply with the law to travel to Queensland (for example, Family Court, parole/bail conditions etc.).
Commissioner Katarina Carroll said police were appreciative of the cooperation shown by the majority of motorists during the border crossing process.
“We know the border controls have caused some delays on the roads, however, we are very grateful for the majority of drivers who have been cooperative and followed police directions,” Commissioner Carroll said.
“The stronger measures will reduce the need for police to conduct follow-up quarantine checks for those who are directed to self-isolate when crossing the border.
“Importantly, penalties may apply to any non-Queensland resident without an exemption who enters the state.”
For more information about border restrictions and exemptions visit: https://www.qld.gov.au/about/newsroom/queensland-border-restrictions