The Mayor wants a checkpoint to be set up on the M1 next time there is a COVID outbreak in Brisbane which would allow the Gold Coast to remain free.
Tom Tate has been critical of the decision to include the Gold Coast in southeast Queensland’s most recent lockdown, which was lifted on Sunday afternoon.
There had been no local cases recorded in the city during the Brisbane outbreak, however, a suspected positive case on the Gold Coast remains under investigation.
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Mayor Tate says the Gold Coast has unfairly paid the price for the latest lockdown, and future lockdowns should be more localised.
“We’ve got to learn how to do things better so that the rest of us are protected and the livelihood of the rest of southeast Queensland, and the state for the matter continues to flourish,” the Mayor told the ABC.
“Otherwise we have a small outbreak and the whole 2.5 million people are back in lockdown and it quells business confidence and we’re back to square one.”
The Mayor says if there are any further outbreaks in Brisbane, a checkpoint on the M1 at the Logan River should be set up to keep Brisbane residents out of the Gold Coast.
“Basically any cars going back and forth there…. you go ‘well hang on, why are you driving to the Gold Coast?’ If it means you’re coming back home, fine.
“If it means the sun’s out and I want to go to the beach, well hang on, turn around and go back to where you are.”
Police have played down the idea, arguing it would be very hard to make it work.
“There’d be some, I imagine some significant challenges around trying to close the M1 and rail corridors etc southbound. The flow-on implications would be quite significant,” Acting Chief Superintendent Rhys Wildman told the ABC.
“To actually completely isolate the Gold Coast, I’m not sure whether that’s even legally possible.”
The Premier has also dismissed the plan while defending the decision to include the Gold Coast in the recent lockdown.
Annastacia Palaszczuk insists the Gold Coast remains a risk.
“The reality is, we are still investigating that case at the moment on the Gold Coast. There have been exposure sites on the Gold Coast,” The Premier said.
“The Gold Coast is incredibly close to the New South Wales border so the Gold Coast is still of concern.”