Queensland has strengthened its border restrictions for Victorians.
Previously Victorians could enter the Sunshine State if they spent two weeks in quarantine – but now they have been totally banned and will be turned around.
Deputy Premier Steven Miles said too many Victorians were paying $2,800 for their own quarantine just to get out of Melbourne.
Lines of Healthcare professionals are seen entering the North Melbourne Public Housing tower complex
He said the government wants to preserve quarantine places for Queenslanders.
From midday on Friday Queenslanders will have to pay for their own quarantine if they are returning from Victoria.
‘Please get home now. Please get home as quickly as you can,’ Mr Miles said on Thursday.
‘They (Victoria) now have more than twice the number of cases that Queensland had in total (and) they now have more locally acquired cases than Queensland had overseas acquired cases.’
All other Australians will be allowed to enter Queensland from midday on Friday.
Mr Miles announced that anyone entering the state will be required to sign a border declaration form in which they promise to get tested if they develop symptoms.
Anyone who develops symptoms but does not immediately get tested will be fined $4,000, he said.
Border passes for freight drivers will need to be renewed every week.
Next week 238,000 people will be entering the state, police said.
The relaxation of the border restrictions comes as the premier says many of the restrictions that have shaped the lives of Queenslanders for months are here to stay.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said on Wednesday that unless there was a COVID-19 vaccine, the risk would remain high.
‘Until there is a vaccine, we have to keep up with the social distancing, we never know when there could be a new case,’ she said.
‘We have contact tracing in place ready to go and as we’ve seen, it can emerge very quickly, like it has in Victoria.’
The state government will continue to review restrictions and potentially ease them further if they deem it safe to do so.