Brisbanites will be forced to wear a mask and given only four reasons to leave the home when the state enters a hard three-day lockdown on Friday evening.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the draconian restrictions for Greater Brisbane’s 2.5million residents – which will come into effect from 6pm on Friday – after a Brisbane quarantine hotel cleaner contracted UK strain of the virus.
Queensland reported nine new COVID-19 cases on Friday – although all were in hotel quarantine.
The lockdown will apply to council areas of Brisbane, Logan, Ipswich, Moreton, and Redlands.
Those living within the specified council areas will have to wear a mask when out in public, although children under the age of 12 are exempt.
Queenslanders in other parts of the state who have been in Greater Brisbane since January 2 have been told they should stay at home for the next three days.
Funerals will also be limited to 20 people for the next three days, while only 10 can gather for a wedding.
‘Think of it as a long weekend at home. We need to do this. I’ve accepted the strong advice from Dr Young,’ Ms Palaszczuk said.
WHAT BRISBANE RESIDENTS CAN AND CAN’T DO DURING THREE-DAY LOCKDOWN
Residents can only go outside for one of four essential reasons – for work, to do essential shopping or to provide healthcare for a vulnerable person in their local neighbourhood.
Only two guests are allowed inside the home.
Masks must be worn when out in public although children under the age of 12 are exempt.
Funerals are limited to only 20 people and weddings to 10 people.
Queenslanders in other parts of the state should stay at home for the next three days if they have been in Greater Brisbane since January 2
Brisbane residents will have to wear a mask when out in public as part of a strict three-day lockdown imposed by the Queensland government. People arrive to get COVID-19 tested at the Parklands Christian College in Logan in Brisbane.
There are 2.5 million people living in greater Brisbane with lockdown applying to the council areas of Brisbane, Logan, Ipswich, Moreton, and Redlands
The restrictions come after the state reported on Thursday a Brisbane quarantine hotel cleaner had been diagnosed with the UK variant of Covid-19.
Aged care homes across greater Brisbane were sent into lockdown with visitors barred from visiting facilities in the Metro North, Metro South and West Morton heath regions.
Residents will be required to stay at home until 6pm on Monday and only go out for work, to do essential shopping or to provide healthcare for a vulnerable person. Pictured are police checks at the Coolangatta border on the Gold Coast on July 10
Only 10 people can gather for a wedding in Brisbane over the next three days (stock image)
Hospitals, prisons and disability accommodation in the same areas are also banned from accepting visitors.
‘The Chief Health Officer has ordered these immediate steps to protect vulnerable members of the community,’ Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk tweeted on Thursday night.
The state is on high alert for cases of community transmission after the cleaner tested positive on Thursday.
The news comes after the state reported on Thursday a Brisbane quarantine hotel cleaner been diagnosed with the UK variant, sending aged care homes across greater Brisbane into lockdowns (pictured, a testing centre in Murrarrie, Brisbane)
The mutated strain plaguing the UK is believed to be up to 70 per cent more infectious than the original.
It is causing a sharp rise in cases in England and prompted British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to order a national lockdown until at least mid-February.
Britain reported more than 60,000 new confirmed cases in 24 hours for the second day in a row on Wednesday.
The hotel cleaner’s infection ends almost four months of zero locally acquired cases in Queensland.
A terrifying map shows the Brisbane locations which have been exposed to the UK’s mutant variant of the virus since January 2, including a busy train line, a Coles and a Woolworths
‘Queensland has done a great job containing this virus in our community for 113 days. Sadly, today we do have a locally acquired case,’ Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said on Thursday morning.
The positive case, a woman in her 20s, was infectious from January 2 before testing positive after showing symptoms on Wednesday.
Anyone with symptoms of coronavirus is urged to get tested immediately.
Contact tracers are tracking the movements of the cleaner, who worked at the hotel Grand Chancellor on January 2.
The infected cleaner, a woman in her 20s who lives in Algester, had been working at the Hotel Grand Chancellor at Spring Hill (pictured), with her most recent shift on January 2
‘This cleaner did everything right,’ Ms Palaszczuk said earlier on Thursday.
‘She developed the symptoms Wednesday and was tested yesterday.
‘We need to ensure that there is no community spread. Once again, please, if you’re sick, get tested.’
The woman from Algester travelled on the public rail network to and from Brisbane’s inner city and southside.
Health authorities say she visited several locations while potentially infectious.
The woman travelled on a train from Altandi station to Roma Street station at 7am on January 2, then returned on the 4pm service the same day.
She also visited Woolworths at the Calamvale Central Shopping Centre from 11am to 12pm on Sunday 3 January.
The cleaner visited the Calamvale North Woolworths (pictured) between 11am and noon on January 3 while infected
She was also at Coles in Sunnybank Hills for 30 minutes from 7.30am on Tuesday 5 January.
She was also a newsagent at Sunnybank Hills Shopping Town from 8am to 8.15am on the same day.
‘It’s important that people if they have any symptoms at all come forward and get tested,’ Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said.
Residents of Algester, Sunnybank Hills and Calamvale who have symptoms of the infection are especially urged to get tested as soon as possible.
The UK variant of Covid entered Queensland via a returned traveller at Brisbane Airport and has been identified in quarantine throughout the nation. This is the first time it has leaked from hotel quarantine
The Sunshine State now has 20 active COVID-19 cases and the new positive case comes from 15,000 tests over the previous 24-hour period.
Ms Palaszczuk has also announced travellers coming from Greater Sydney will not be allowed into Queensland until at least the end of January.
‘I know this is very disappointing for people during this time, but we are concerned still about Greater Sydney. We have a watching brief as well on Victoria,’ she said.
‘We’ll be having a national cabinet meeting tomorrow. I’ll get further updates there.’
The border closure will be reviewed at the end of the month.