Just hours after barring travellers from much of Western Australia from entering the state, Queensland is finally open to Greater Sydney once again.
Queensland closed the border to 35 local government areas in Greater Sydney, Wollongong and the Central Coast in the midst of December’s COVID-19 outbreak, causing chaos for travellers before Christmas.
But with NSW now going 14 days without a single local virus case, Queensland’s border checkpoints are being dismantled from Monday.
When announcing restrictions would lift on Thursday, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk acknowledged the border closure had been “a really, really long haul, and it has been tough on everybody”.
Queensland has barred NSW residents from entering the state three separate times since the pandemic began.
Western Australia is now getting the same treatment, with travellers from the Perth, Peel and South West regions of the state required to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival after a WA hotel quarantine worker tested positive to the virus.
Queensland Health also announced that anyone who had travelled from those WA areas since January 26 should be tested and isolate until they receive their result.
The decision, which came into effect from 6pm on Sunday, comes after the same regions went into a five-day lockdown because of the infection.
Authorities believe the man in his 20s, who worked at the Sheraton Four Points hotel in Perth’s CBD, has probably contracted the highly contagious UK variant of the virus and have urged anyone to get tested if they have symptoms after he visited 15 venues while potentially infectious.
All residents must stay at home unless shopping for essentials, attending to medical or healthcare needs, exercising within their neighbourhood or working if unable to do so remotely.
Schools which were due to resume on Monday will remain closed for another week.
WA had gone nearly 10 months without a virus case in the community before the breach.