Queensland has recorded one new case of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, a teenager who returned from overseas and is already in hotel quarantine.
Health Minister Steven Miles said the state’s “very strong” hotel quarantine program had kept Queenslanders safe.
“I want to thank, on behalf of all Queenslanders, those hotels, hotel owners and hotel workers who have assisted us, and police, in enforcing this hotel quarantine,” he said.
“It’s been incredibly effective and important as we seek to increase the number of overseas travellers able to come back into Queensland.”
There are 17 active cases in the state, including 11 in the West Moreton region.
“While the numbers continue to go down, they’re clustered in the southern suburbs and around Ipswich,” he said.
More than 2700 tests have been conducted in the past testing period, with Mr Miles saying that was, “well below the level we’d like to be tested at”.
“If for any reason you think you may have symptoms, please do go get tested, especially if you’re in the Ipswich region or the southern suburbs of Brisbane,” he said.
Grand final seating trial
Meanwhile, a small group of 200 AFL spectators at Monday night’s Collingwood and Port Adelaide game at the Gabba will be placed in a section at 75 per cent capacity in a seating trial ahead of the Grand Final.
Currently, crowd capacity at Queensland stadiums is capped at 50 per cent, but Mr Miles told ABC Radio Brisbane plans were underway to increase that density ahead of next month’s trophy decider in Brisbane.
“This is a trial to see how that works, what the risks are, and whether the additional measures like masks, how effective that is,” he said.
“It’s highly unlikely that we’d see an infection, it’s been quite some time since we’ve had a COVID case in our community, so we’ll be measuring things like whether people move around, whether they leave their masks on, how often they sanitise their hands.”
He said the government hoped to increase the 10-person limit on households “very soon” as the state approached two weeks since the last community transmission.
But he said the risk from indoor gatherings was greater than stadiums.
“It’s not possible in your homes to assign people to their seat, require them not to move from section to section … to have security in place to enforce those rules,” Mr Miles said.
Chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young said the stadium seating trial to test increasing density was an important step.
“It will be very easy to contact trace,” she said.
“It’s a really good thing, to test the processes rather than do it for the first time with a full stadium.
“Right from the start, I’ve said where we’ve got COVID-safe plans, we should use them. Now we don’t have COVID-safe plans for people’s own homes.”
Deputy Police Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said in the past 24 hours, police had checked more than 122,000 domestic passengers and refused entry to 2207 people.
He said eight fines were issued at the weekend, including for a karaoke bar at Sunnybank and a hotel in Fortitude Valley that had previously come to the attention of police.
“What was disappointing was that both of these licensed premises had been warned – one about not keeping registers and the other around people not socially distancing,” he said.
“They chose not to take that warning and they have now been fined.”
He said the other six fines related to individuals not complying “with their exemption requirements”.
Mr Miles said NSW and Victoria had both done “incredibly well” in bringing down coronavirus cases.
“What we consider when we consider opening borders it the risk of transmission in the places that we’re opening borders to,” he said.
“[That risk] will be monitored in an ongoing way with NSW.”