Water patrols ramped up amid rise in Sydney boats docking on the Gold Coast

Water patrols have ramped up on the Gold Coast after a number of boaties were busted sailing in from COVID-ravaged Sydney hotspots.

Three vessels have arrived on the Gold Coast from Sydney in the last couple of weeks. One of the boats was turned around while those on board the other two boats were handed $4,135 fines and directed into hotel quarantine.

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Queensland Police have confirmed patrols have been stepped up to try and catch those looking to flout the border restrictions.

“We’re making sure that both, through our District Disaster Co-ordinators and through Water Police as well as Maritime Safety Queensland, that they have sufficient resources to do the sort of patrols we’re looking for,” Deputy Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said.

“They’re doing a great job but obviously, we saw this last year, there was a little bit of a period there where we saw more boats than we would have liked to and we’ll increase our patrols to make sure we accommodate that.

The Deputy Commissioner said they were disappointed by the number of people trying to bypass the restrictions.

“Most of our community, by and large, are absolutely doing the right thing and they have all the way through this,” he said.

“It’s a small minority, including some people who think they can just do whatever they want and then come in on a big boat and do what they did.

“There are consequences for that, so they should stop that.”

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk also urged people arriving in Queensland to follow the rules.

“Let me make it clear, we do not want people coming here breaking the law. Pure and simple,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“It is extremely disappointing to see that happen and I know that Maritime Safety and police have been working on that.”

Queensland Police said compliance at our road borders was good, with only one vehicle turned around yesterday out of 2,053 intercepts.

“That is a very good figure for us,” Dep. Comm. Gollschewski said.

“That means we are getting compliance from people coming into the state.

“We need that to continue.”