By 96five Friday 2 Oct 2020
Queensland border restrictions have now eased, allowing all Queensland residents to travel to the defined New South Wales border zone and return into Queensland.
From 1am, Thursday, October 1, the defined New South Wales border zone has been extended to include further New South Wales Local Government Areas (LGAs).
The remainder of New South Wales and the state of Victoria remain declared COVID-19 hotspots and are closed to people travelling via road, unless an exception applies, or the individual has been granted an exemption by the Chief Health Officer (CHO).
Queensland residents intending on travelling within the New South Wales border zone and re-entering Queensland, will need to apply for the updated ‘X’ pass, also known as ‘Border Zone Resident Declaration Pass’.
The eased border restrictions also include, New South Wales border zone residents who have not travelled to a declared COVID-19 hotspot in the last 14 days, to travel anywhere in Queensland for any purpose.
Providing false information on the declaration or entering Queensland unlawfully could result in a $4,003 fine or a notice to appear in court.
Anyone with information about potential breaches of the Queensland COVID-19 Border Direction should report the matter online or call Policelink on 131 444 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
For more information including questions and answers about the new restrictions click here.
The Queensland Government also has plans to ease COVID-19 restrictions during October, November and December.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the new roadmap gives more certainty to the community and businesses through to the end of this year by outlining monthly easing of restrictions – including increasing gatherings in public spaces, unseated drinking and eating, dancing at weddings and removing some border restrictions.
“Queenslanders deserve the credit for this,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“And from 4pm today, Queenslanders will be able to celebrate this achievement by getting a drink or a meal out without having to be seated.
“We have always said that we would continue to ease restrictions where we could in a staged and balanced way to keep Queenslanders safe – and this plan does just that.
“We’ve had to make hard decisions, but it is because of these decisions and the hard work of Queenslanders that we are in the position to continue easing restrictions.
“It’s because of our strong health response to the COVID19 pandemic that we can get on with Queensland’s economic recovery plan.”
Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young thanked Queenslanders for being so cooperative with public health directions and restrictions.
“The hard work of Queenslanders has helped us to the strong position our state is in today – it has been a fantastic result,” Dr Young said.
“So that we can keep easing restrictions, it is vital that we maintain physical distance (think two big steps), wear a facemask in public when physical distancing is not possible and wash your hands.
“But most importantly, if you are sick, get tested and stay at home.”
Stage 4 of the Roadmap started at 1am on 1 October by extending the Northern NSW border zone and moving Queenslanders outside, where a Summertime Taskforce will also be established to identify more outdoor opportunities. Unseated drinking and eating will come into effect from 4pm 2 October.
If there is no unlinked community transmission in NSW for 28 days, Stage 5 could start from 1am 1 November and will see the Queensland border open up to NSW visitors and return travellers, while also increasing public gatherings to 40 people, permitting unseated drinking and eating at venues with a COVID Safe Plan and allowing up to 40 people to dance at a wedding with a COVID Safe Plan.
Stage 6, anticipated from 1am 1 December, will see public gatherings increase to 50 people, increased attendances at outdoor events and no restrictions on people dancing at weddings.
The Queensland border will remain closed to Victoria until community transmission is under control.