COVID-19: Brisbane to enter 3-day lockdown from 5 pm today Monday 29 March 2021
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has declared Brisbane a ‘hotspot’ and has announced 10 new cases of COVID-19 this morning. 6 are in recently arrived travellers and were acquired overseas, but 4 are through local community transmission, with 2 linked to the recent outbreak of the UK strain identified in Brisbane last Thursday. There are 2 cases, where the origin is currently unknown.
“So my recommendation to other States and Territories is that they should declare this greater Brisbane a hot spot as well. That worked very well when we did that last time. Once we declare it we are asking other people around the country to do that same thing and declare it as well.”Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk
The lock-down will cover council districts including Greater Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan, Moreton and Redlands.
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The wearing of masks has been mandate applicable indoors (except in your own home), unless you are in a single room by yourself. Gatherings are also restricted to 30 people with the 2 square metre requirement in place, and patrons need to be seated.
Byron Bay – stay alert
And it looks like 2 of the infected people were in anti-vaxxer central, Byron Bay while infectious. The gorgeous northern NSW tourist centre, which has become a COVID-19 refuge for well-off, retired baby boomer, upper crust Sydney-siders (some of my best friends are …), has been pretty much virus free since the start of the pandemic. Looks like that might be threatened. Mask up beach-lovers, and maintain your distance.
Some states have already announced border restrictions for anyone arriving from Queensland – Western Australia, where you have to head into 14 days quarantine – NSW where only those who have arrived from affected venues need to be tested and isolate.
State border restrictions on Queenslanders will undoubtedly change after this lockdown announcement, so check State government health websites for updated details.
And in keeping with the above – South Australia has just announced a hard-border close-down to anyone arriving from Brisbane after 4pm SA time today. Arrivals will need to enter hotel isolation for 14 days and be subjected to testing during that period. And, if you have arrived in Adelaide from greater Brisbane since 20 March, then you must get tested and stay in isolation until you have a negative result.
If you’ve been in Brisbane recently
Here’s what the Chief Health Officer for Queensland has to say:
“If your home is normally outside Brisbane, you have come into Brisbane to work for the day, as we know a lot of people do, of course, you can then return to your home but anyone who has been in that greater Brisbane area since Saturday, 20 March, is now required to follow those same requirements, that is to stay wherever they are except for those four reasons.“Jeanette Young, Chief Health Officer for Queensland
So that’s only leaving your home for essential reasons (grocery shopping, exercise, work and medical care), and getting tested if you display symptoms.
Flights and travel
Remember, anyone who has been in the Greater Brisbane region between now and March 20 must lock down – which means staying at home unless it’s for — essential work, to buy food, medications etc, to look after a vulnerable person or for exercise.
It is unclear what will happen to flights at the moment, but expect cancellations, so contact your airline or travel agent before you head off to your airport – particularly if flying out of Brisbane.
You may be denied entry to Brisbane Airport, even if transitting, if your travel is not deemed essential.
Queensland has already announced a halving of international arrivals.
There don’t appear to be any cancelled arrivals or departures related to the lock-down at Brisbane Airport yet, but I would expect that to change over the course of the day.
If you are planning trans-Tasman or international travel in the next 12 months – and who isn’t? – then this is a great way to earn Gold with Air New Zealand, and for getting gold recognition on 26 Star Alliance members from Singapore Airlines and Thai to Asiana, ANA and Lufthansa.
Air New Zealand fares appear significantly lower than Qantas at the moment, in most classes, so why not save some money, and match your status? You will also travel on either their 787 or brand new A321neo’s compared to Qantas A330’s where you might have to endure the flying kangaroo’s business suite product (ironic yuk!)
It seems like it’s status match nirvana at the moment.
I see empty toilet paper shelves at supermarkets . . .