UPDATE @ 3.30 PM | A man who escaped from hotel quarantine in Queensland has surrendered and is now back in isolation.
The 25-year-old fled a hotel in Toowoomba on day nine of his mandatory stay after returning from a NSW hotspot.
It sparked a major manhunt, however State Disaster Coordinator Steve Gollschewski confirmed the man handed himself in on Wednesday afternoon and returned to quarantine.
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He revealed the man is due to face court next month after previously being charged with other criminal offences and also attempting to get into Queensland unlawfully.
Gollschewski confirmed this is the first incident we have had in Queensland in terms of someone escaping quarantine and said police are working to ensure it doesn’t happen again.
“We are very concerned about any quarantine failure in Queensland,” he said.
“So there is an independent investigation being done and a review of what has occurred with this person individually and also to check our systems to make sure that we have full confidence that we will be able to ensure that all persons that are in quarantine remain there until they complete that quarantine.
The man had previously tested negative to COVID-19, however he is now undergoing a further test to make sure he did not have the virus during his stint in the community.
EARLIER @ 11.45 AM | A major manhunt is underway for a man who has fled hotel quarantine in Queensland.
Queensland Police confirmed in a statement a short time ago that the 25-year-old has gone missing from a hotel in Toowoomba.
“Police are currently searching for a man who breached mandatory hotel quarantine in Toowoomba,” police said.
“The 25-year-old man returned from a New South Wales hotspot and was directed to hotel quarantine for 14 days.”
The man is believed to have been on his ninth day of quarantine when he fled.
Police Minister Mark Ryan said the man previously returned a negative COVID-19 test and is therefore not considered a high risk to the community.
However, he warned the man will be facing the consequences of his actions.
“It is a very serious matter to breach quarantine and there will be very serious consequences as well,” Minister Ryan said.
Queensland residents who return to the state from either NSW, Victoria or the ACT are required to go into mandatory two weeks hotel quarantine at their own expense under the Queensland Government’s strict border ban rules.