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Woman may have infected vulnerable islanders and ferry travellers with virus

3 weeks ago 13

A woman who tested positive to COVID-19 in Queensland overnight may have exposed vulnerable islanders and ferry travellers.

The woman, aged in her 60s and the only new Queensland case, is believed to be linked to the existing correctional academy cluster.

Deputy Premier Steven Miles said the woman travelled to and from Russell Island on a ferry while possibly infectious in the past three or four days.

“We have been concerned throughout the pandemic about the Southern Moreton Bay Islands,” he told reporters on Saturday.

“People on those islands, they are vulnerable and they often have difficulty accessing health services.

“We wanted to get a message out very quickly to people on those islands, or who have travelled on the Russell Island ferry to monitor their health very, very closely.

“If they have any symptoms whatsoever … please go and get tested.”

A fever clinic is being set up on the island and authorities are working on logistics of having testing available on other islands.

Mr Miles said there was no cause for panic or undue concern, but there was potential for others to have been exposed to COVID-19.

Queensland currently has 26 active cases.

Asked about the hotspot plan, Mr Miles said Queensland would work with the Commonwealth.

“The most important thing for us though is that we maintain the ability to respond to the outbreak here in Queensland as Queensland requires,” he said.

The deputy premier said he would love to open the domestic borders by Christmas or sooner.

“That will really depend on what happens with the virus between now and then,” he said.

“I really would love to see the virus under control in Victoria by Christmas.”

Throughout Mr Miles’ press conference, a man stood behind him holding a sign that read “reset parliament”.

Meanwhile, shoppers who visited two furniture stores or a Spotlight west of Brisbane have been put on alert and urged to monitor their symptoms after a positive COVID case visited the businesses.

The coronavirus case went to Spotlight and Fantastic Furniture at West Ipswich and Johnny’s Furniture outlet at Booval between 9.30am and 11.10am on August 29.

The news comes just after a the 64-year-old skipper of a luxury superyacht that allegedly breached Queensland’s strict border ban has been charged by police.

Queensland Police said the man allegedly provided false information to an emergency officer about not leaving the yacht in NSW, when he actually had.

He has been issued with a notice to appear for breaching the public health act.

The Lady Pamela arrived at Coomera following a 15-day journey with seven people on board on August 25 after having previously travelled from NSW and virus-stricken Victoria.

Melbourne millionaire Mark Simonds and his family were allegedly on board.

It was reported that they were fined a total of $9000 fine.

It is understood Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young initially granted the passengers an exemption from mandatory quarantine.

But those exemptions were revoked and all seven passengers were placed into hotel quarantine, and they’ll be forced to foot the bill.

Detectives are still investigating the Lady Pamela’s movements but it is believed to have stopped at several ports in NSW.

The yacht skipper will appear at Southport Magistrates Court on September 11.

NSW Police is assisting its counterparts north of the border.

Last week NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said the team was investigating whether the Victorian family had a permit to leave the state.

On Friday, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk reiterated her strong stance on border, slamming any criticism she has received from neighbouring states.

She said attacks against her state have been “relentless” and that Queensland has been “singled out”.

“It is intimidating, but I will not be intimidated,” she said.

“Because we are focused on the health response our economy is able to do better than other states.

“It’s a bit disingenuous that this criticism is coming from a whole lot of levels.”

Meanwhile the two Richmond players at the centre of an alleged brawl outside a strip club on the Gold Coast have been booted out of Queensland.

The Courier-Mail reports Sydney Stack and Callum Coleman-Jones were involved in an altercation after being evicted from Hollywood Showgirls on the glitter strip’s Orchid Ave.

The pair has been kicked out of Queensland and the club slapped with a $100,000 fine.

The Tigers duo has been handed a 10-match suspension.

Mr Miles said it sounded “pretty inappropriate” and was disappointing, adding they deserved to be sent home.

“Our sporting stars, they are leaders in our community. Young people look up to them,” he said.

“It’s good to see that they’ve been sent home. The AFL have acted pretty strongly.”

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