“Expect to get stopped” Top cop’s warning ahead of border reopening

Queensland Police have warned they will be on high alert for anyone trying to illegally cross the border into Queensland once the sunshine state reopens on Monday.

From 1.00am on December 13, fully-vaccinated travellers from interstate hotspots will finally be allowed back into Queensland, given they have returned a negative COVID-19 test.

The Gold Coast’s top cop, acting chief Superintendent Rhys Wildman, has warned delays at the border checkpoints will be inevitable with thousands of people expected to flock to the glitter strip.


He said while all five Gold Coast checkpoints will look the same, they will be operating differently come Monday.

“We will be using a ‘risk-based’ approach, so what we will be doing is actually managing the traffic flows,” Acting Chief Spt Wildman said.

“At quieter times, we will be completing up to 100 per cent compliance of all border passes.

“But if you are travelling at peak times, then we will manage the traffic flows and manage the expectations around keeping the Gold Coast community safe”.

Fully vaccinated border zone residents will be exempt from having to return a negative PCR test, however, they will be required to apply for a new XV border pass in order to enter Queensland.

Acting Chief Spt Wildman said the passes won’t be available online until at least an hour before the borders reopen.

“We’re really asking our border community residents who are fully vaccinated to download this pass as soon as it goes online, print it off, and have this visibly displed on your dash as you enter Queensland,” he said.

“The idea of that is to assist our officers in using this ‘risk-based’ approach to manage not only traffic flows, but to look at which particualr vehicles need to be intercepted”.

Vehicles without the XV border passes will be the main target for officers, but police have warned border residents that they could also be pulled over.

“We will be conducting greater compliance in relation to vehicles that aren’t using the XV pass, but just to highlight, even with an XV pass you can still expect to get stopped,” Acting Chief Spt Wildman said.

“It’s really important to note that you can be stopped at any time crossing our Queensland borders.”

Monday and Tuesday are expected to be “quite challenging” as both police and motorists adapt to the changes.

“There will be delays, but this is not unusual,” Acting Chief Spt Wildman said, adding that additional staff will be rostered on at the checkpoints to help deal with the influx of travellers.

“Anytime we have significant changes in our border operations, we find that, especially the border community, do take a bit of time to update their passes, get the correct information online and have it ready to present to officers at the checkpoints.”

He urged motorists planning on travelling across the border on Monday and Tuesday to “pack their patience”.

“We will try and process people as quickly as possible through the checkpoints, but our officers will maintain that compliance approach”.

Police have also issued a stern warning to those thinking about entering illegally, especially travellers hoping to sneak in with a fake vaccination certificate.

“Every vehicle that crosses into Queensland through the Gold Coast is monitored, we have monitoring cameras on every vehicle,” Acting Chief Spt Wildman said.

“What we can do is if intelligence comes to light, often from members of the public, we make enquiries, and since the operation started last year police have issued 647 Penalty Infringement Notices just here on the Gold Coast”.

“We do take enforcement action, we take these issues very seriously”.