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Byron Shire
May 13, 2021

Brisbane Airport green zone breach update

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A story The Echo posted this morning about the breach at Brisbane International Airport has been updated as the Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young, has declared the international terminal a venue of concern.

After testing one of the passengers involved in the breach at the airport yesterday has tested positive to COVID-19.

‘Anyone who was in the terminal between 9.45am and midday on Thursday, 29 April 2021, should monitor their symptoms and get tested immediately if they feel unwell,’ she said.

The man arrived on a flight from Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, yesterday morning.

He and his travel partner were mistakenly directed to the airport’s green departure zone, instead of the red zone for travellers from higher-risk countries.

They spent about two hours among passengers of three New Zealand-bound flights.

Closed-circuit television footage shows they spent most of that time in Hudson Café, had minimal interaction with other people and wore masks appropriately. The footage shows the table was also cleaned once they left.

Mistake was identified

Once the mistake was identified, the two passengers were tested for COVID-19.

One man’s initial test was equivocal, meaning it was neither positive nor negative. Further testing revealed he is positive. The other passenger is negative.

Serology testing is underway to determine if the confirmed case is historical.

The three flights affected are Air New Zealand NZ202 from Brisbane to Christchurch, Air New Zealand NZ146 from Brisbane to Auckland, and Qantas QF135 from Brisbane to Christchurch.

Dr Young said while the risk of Queenslanders being infected was low, she was taking precautions.

‘Staff who came into contact with this case have been placed into quarantine,’ she said. ‘We have advised the NZ Ministry of Health of the latest results and they are taking their own protection measures.’

Highlighting the importance of masks

Dr Young said the incident highlighted how important it is to wear masks at airports.

‘Both international and domestic airports are higher-risk environments,’ she said. ‘We need people to wear masks in terminals at all times. We have kept that direction in place and we need people to comply.’

Queensland Health will provide an update once the serology test is known.

Queensland Health is not responsible for security arrangements inside Brisbane International Airport.

For more information on COVID-19, visit https://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19.


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