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Queensland records zero new COVID cases on Monday after Sydney traveller tests positive on weekend


Queensland has recorded zero new local cases of COVID-19 after a Sydney man visited Brisbane Airport while infectious over the weekend.

In the 24 hours till Monday, the state recorded 6825 tests while 21,712 vaccines were administered by Queensland Health.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state will hit a major milestone on Monday, with 70 per cent of the population receiving their first vaccine dose and 52.25 per cent both.

“So that is excellent news,” she said.

But the state wasn’t without a COVID-19 scare over the weekend however, after a traveller with the disease tried to enter Queensland before being turned around by police last week.

QUEENSLAND BORDER CLOSURE
A traveller from Sydney with COVID-19 tried to enter Queensland before police turned him around. Credit: AAP

Queensland Health said the man arrived in Brisbane on Virgin Airlines flight 91 from Sydney on Friday morning, but he did not have a valid border pass to enter.

He was put into hotel quarantine and tested, while authorities waited to send him on back to Sydney on another flight.

The man then flew back to Sydney on Qantas flight 509 on Saturday morning.

Queensland Health then received his positive test results.

Brisbane Airport had been listed as a low risk exposure site on Friday and Saturday mornings.

The domestic terminal’s departure Gate 24 has been listed as a close contact exposure site between 6.18am and 7am on Saturday.

Meanwhile, more than 70 per cent eligible Queenslanders have had a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine after the state used public schools to roll it out over the weekend.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk. Credit: JONO SEARLE/AAPIMAGE

The state is behind most other states except Western Australia in the rollout, and Vaccine Coordinator and Deputy Police Commissioner Shane Chelepy said that was not due to hesitancy, but complacency.

“Absolutely, Queensland and WA we’ve done so well keeping COVID out of our states, I don’t think it’s necessarily hesitancy, I just think that people have become complacent,” he told ABC Radio.

“We’re a bit of a victim of our own success in Queensland, but it’s not going to hold and people need to realise waiting for a vaccine is like waiting for a hailstorm to be over top of your car. It’s no good moving your car undercover once it’s damaged, it’s the same as the vaccine, we need to get out and get it now.”

Chelepy said the state came close to an outbreak two weeks ago, and it’s not going to hold out the Delta strain forever.

Queenslanders have plenty of different vaccine options available, he said, so it’s time for people to come forward and get the jab.

“We have it in all of our Queensland Health vaccination clinics, we have hundreds of general practitioners administering it, we have hundreds of pharmacists administering it, we’re doing it seven days a week,” he said.

“There’s no excuse.”

Queensland has also kicked off a trial of home quarantine for 1000 residents, some of whom have been struck in interstate hotspots for months.

Participants must be fully vaccinated and test negative within three days of travelling to the state.

The government says home quarantine will be expanded if the trial is successful.



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