Greater Brisbane, the Moreton Bay Region, Logan, Ipswich and Redlands will go into a three-day lockdown from 5pm today as Queensland Health discovers more cases of community-transmitted COVID-19.
There were 10 cases recorded in the past 24 hours, six in hotel quarantine, and four community transmission.
Two are linked to the cases last week, two are under investigation and one is a nurse working at the PA hospital in the COVID ward.
After 5pm today, people can only leave home for four reasons: food, exercise, essential work and medical. Schools will be closed, except to children of essential workers.
Everyone must wear masks.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says it is big call with Easter just around the corner, but the high level of community transmission and the large number of potential exposure sites forced her hand.
Contact tracers are working hard to determine which venues have been affected. The lockdown will give them time to get on top of the number of exposure sites and hopefully reduce the amount of community transmission.
"Health has to come first here. I didn't sleep last night. I've very worried. I'm very concerned," Ms Palaszczuk says.
"This is necessary. It is the UK strain and is highly infectious. It is a protective measure and the right thing to do. It is based on the health advice.
"We don't take this measure lightly. These are very difficult decisions and needed to keep Queenslanders safe and to stop the spread of this UK variant."
The COVID-19 cluster was discovered late last week, when a Stafford man tested positive. A close contact of his, a Strathpine man tested positive on Friday night and it has since been discovered the brother of the Stafford man has had COVID-19 is likely to be the link between the PA Hospital doctor cluster and this recent outbreak.
Two of the new cases are work colleagues of the Strathpine man, one has since travelled to Gladstone.
It was revealed the Strathpine man did not host a house party as originally thought on Saturday. There were five people present, not 25, and there's no evidence of any offences being committed.
Those who were at the house have been contacted and are isolating.
A Public Health Alert has been issued for parts of Brisbane and Moreton Bay regions in relation to these cases.
Health Minister and State Member for Redcliffe Yvette D'Ath says masks are mandatory, with exceptions allowed for those with medical conditions who can not wear one.
She is urging people not to get into arguments or abuse those they see not wearing a mask and to instead let compliance officers do their job.
Many venues have been added to the list this morning, including several in the Moreton Bay Region. These include Bunnings at Rothwell, the Redcliffe Peninsula train line, Woolworths and Westpac at Kippa-Ring, Liquorland at Dolphins Central Shopping Centre and IGA Redcliffe . See the full and updated list here
Anyone who visited the following venues at the time the Strathpine man was there must quarantine at home for 14 days.
They must also complete the contact tracing self-assessment if they have not already been contacted by Queensland Health.
And they must stay quarantined even if they get a negative test until the 14 days have passed. It can take 14 days before a patient shows symptoms or tests positive.
|Date||Place||Suburb||Arrival time||Departure time|
|Saturday 20 March||Shinobi Ramen Noodle shop|
Westfield Carindale Shopping Centre
|Saturday 20 March||Black Hops Brewery||East Brisbane||12pm||2pm|
|Sunday 21 March||Mamma’s Italian Restaurant|
69 Redcliffe Parade
|Saturday 20 March||Green Beacon brewing Co.||Teneriffe||2pm||3.12pm|
|Saturday 20 March||Eatons Hill Hotel||Eatons Hill||3.44pm||5.30pm|
|Monday 22 March||PCYC Pine Rivers New||Bray Park||7.16am||8.10am|
Mayor Peter Flannery says Council has cancelled all scheduled events and activities through to close of business Thursday.
“MBRIT has had to make the hard decision to cancel the hugely popular Festival of Sails event this weekend, so I apologise to everyone who’d been looking forward to that,” Mayor Flannery said.
“Three days of inconvenience could save us weeks or months of further lockdowns.
“The Premier has said there’s no need to panic buy - supermarkets are well stocked and will remain open, you just need to wear a face mask if you leave your home.”
Head here for the list of affected venues and service centres
A pop-up drive-through testing clinic is open at South Pine Sports Complex. People are being asked to remain in their vehicles. Medical staff from Sullivan Nicholaides Pathology are coming to car windows to conduct tests.
It will be open until 5pm today and will reopen at 9am tomorrow.
A security guard will be on site during testing hours and traffic management will be in place to manage congestion.
For testing, enter via the main entrance, for sport, enter via the back entrance.
Added testing capacity follows news that a 26-year-old Stafford man tested positive for COVID-19 late last week and had visited a number of venues and businesses in the north Brisbane and Moreton Bay Region, including Mamma’s Italian Restaurant at Redcliffe on Sunday.
Genomic testing has confirmed that Queensland’s latest locally acquired COVID-19 case is linked to the previous cluster announced on March 12 and is the highly contagious UK variant.
A Strathpine man, a friend of the Stafford man, has also since tested positive and visited a number of locations.
People in crowded areas in the Brisbane City area and Moreton Bay Region are being urged to wear a mask.
“If you’re going to a football match, wear a mask going into the venue. If you’re on a crowded train, put a mask on,” Ms Palaszczuk says.
She is also urging people to improve social distancing, which many had stopped doing, and to stop shaking hands.
Aged care facilities, hospitals, prisons and disability care facilities remain closed to visitors in the Brisbane City and Moreton Bay Region council areas.
It is important to:
• Stay home if you are sick
• If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, no matter how mild, get tested
• Stay 1.5 metres away from other people—think two big steps
• Wash your hands with soap and water, or hand sanitiser
• Leave the location if it is crowded.
If you have any concerns about your health, contact your doctor or contact 13HEALTH (13 43 25 84).
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