The border crossing between NSW and Queensland will become stricter from midday on Friday with a mix of checkpoints and hard closures between the states.
While Queensland is theoretically opening up ‘its borders to all states’ from Friday 10 July there will be exceptions for areas that are declared ‘hot spots’.
‘Currently all of the state of Victoria has been declared as a ‘hot spot’ for people entering Queensland,’ said the Queensland Police in a press release this morning.
Anyone wanting to enter Queensland from midday this Friday, July 10, 2020 will need a ‘Queensland Border Declaration Pass and any necessary documentation to prove they have not been in Victoria over the past 14 days.’
These changes will apply to both Queensland residents and visitors.
NSW Police are urging travellers planning to cross the NSW/Queensland border tomorrow to expect significant delays on our roads when the border re-opens.
‘With the change in entry conditions, the NSW Police Force is working closely with the Queensland Police Service and are urging motorists to be ready to provide all relevant documentation and identification at checkpoints to assist with reducing delays,’ said a NSW police spoesperson.
With thousands of motorists expected to be travelling into and through the Far North Coast region, Tweed/Byron Police Commander, Superintendent Dave Roptell, is pleading with drivers to be patient and prepared for a heavily delayed journey.
‘If you are choosing to cross the border in the next 72-hours, please be aware we anticipate there will be extensive delays at the major checkpoints – these delays could be more than a couple of hours, with queues potentially up to 20km long.
‘We are working with our counterparts over the border to ensure as smooth a transition to the new border pass system as possible, but we understand this will take time to work through.
‘If you do not need to cross the border on Friday, we are asking you to delay your travel for a couple of days to allow for the large influx of traffic to flow through the checkpoints.
‘If you do decide to cross the border, make sure you are well prepared – have some snacks and water in the car, stop off at a rest stop or coastal town for a pit stop and bathroom break before piling into the car.
‘It will be a long journey, so we are asking drivers to please be patient. Always drive to the conditions, don’t speed to try and get to your destination sooner, don’t have any distractions around you while behind the wheel, and as always – do not drink or drug drive,’ Supt Roptell said.
Chief Superintendent Mark Wheeler said the aim of these changes were to protect Queensland from COVID-19 community transmission being experienced in other states.
‘These strict measures are about safeguarding Queensland in the midst of a global pandemic,’ Chief Superintendent Wheeler said.
‘They are necessary and important to maintain the good work that has already been done in controlling and stopping the spread of COVID-19 in our state.
‘We acknowledge there will be a higher volume of traffic and varying delays when travelling across our border.
‘We are asking members of the public to work with us and have their declaration pass, any necessary proof or documentation ready and above all, to be patient when crossing the border.
Renewal every seven days
Residents and visitors will be required to renew their passes every seven days.
‘Importantly, border passes need to be renewed every seven days to ensure declarations are accurate and up-to-date,’ he said.
Failure to comply with quarantine directions and border restrictions can result in on-the-spot fines of $1,334 for individuals and $6,672 for corporations.
Providing false information on the declaration or entering Queensland unlawfully could result in a $4,003 fine.
The Queensland Entry Declaration can be accessed at the Queensland border pass website and is valid for seven days.
Checkpoints and hard closures
Police check points will continue to be in place and operating at Coolangatta and across border crossing in the Gold Coast District.
Police controlled vehicle checkpoints:
Griffith Street and Stuart Street
Gold Coast Highway and Coolangatta Road
M1 northbound at Stewarts Road
Nerang Murwillumbah Road, Natural Bridge will have a QPS controlled border pass system between 7am to 7pm each day and 24-hour access to emergency vehicles
Miles Street will be restricted access to local border residents only
Boundary Street and Clarke Street
Dixon Street and Bay Street
Dixon Street and Florence Street
Leeward Terrace and Tooloon Street
Kent Street near Murraba Crescent
Tomewin Mountain Road, Currumbin Valley
Social distance please
Tweed/Byron police are also reminding holidaymakers coming to popular tourist destinations such as Byron Bay, Bangalow, Ballina and Suffolk Park to adhere to social distancing guidelines and follow current NSW Public Health Orders.
‘We are not out of the danger zone yet,’ Supt Roptell said.
‘With thousands of NSW residents now able to travel across the state, we are seeing a massive influx of visitors to our popular coastal spots.
‘Police are continuing to conduct high-visibility patrols in and around the busy strips and ensuring locals and tourists alike are following the current rules.
‘Public gathering restrictions, restaurant, café and pub limits and the 4sqm rule are still in place – and of course, if you have any symptoms, go and get tested,’ Supt Roptell said.
To see the most up-to-date traffic conditions, visit www.livetraffic.com.
To apply for a Queensland Border Declaration Pass, visit www.qld.gov.au/border-pass.