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Queensland Will Start Lifting Some Stay-at-Home Restrictions From Next Weekend

You'll be able to go for a drive, have a picnic, visit a national park and shop for non-essential items.
By Sarah Ward
April 26, 2020
By Sarah Ward
April 26, 2020

When, across the 24-hour period from Sunday, April 19 to Monday, April 20, Queensland experienced its first day without any new COVID-19 cases in six weeks, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk revealed that easing some stay-at-home social-distancing restrictions could be on the cards. With the state's new case numbers remaining low all week, that's now becoming a reality — for a select number of activities.

From 11.59pm Friday, May 1 — just in time for the Labour Day long weekend, which runs from Saturday, May 2–Monday, May 4 — Queenslanders will be able to spend more time out of the house for some forms of recreation. On the agenda, as just announced by the Premier on Sunday, April 26: going for a drive, hopping on a motorcycle or boat, having a picnic, visiting a national park and shopping for non-essential items. Restrictions still apply to these activities; however they've been loosened from current limits.

If you're eager to hit the road, you'll be able to see the sights by car. When the new rules come into effect, you'll also be able to ride a motorbike for recreational purposes, plus a jetski and a boat. For those raring to pack a basket and enjoy a picnic, that'll be possible as well, as will going for a trek through a national park.

Shopping-wise, you'll be able to browse and buy items other than groceries, too — "like clothes and shoes," the Premier noted. "But we don't want you spending hours in those shopping areas," she explained.

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Posted by Annastacia Palaszczuk MP on Saturday, 25 April 2020

Whichever of the above you're keen to do, you'll still have to stay close to home. Queenslanders will be allowed to partake in the above activities, but only within 50 kilometres of your house.

And, you'll still only be able to drive, boat, picnic, walk and shop either with one other person, or with members of your own household — keeping in line with the restrictions that currently apply to exercising out of the house. The 1.5-metre social-distancing requirement also remains in effect.

The Qld Government says it will watch the state's case numbers after loosening the above restrictions, and will review the measures after two weeks. "If we do see mass gatherings, I will not hesitate to clamp back down," the Premier said.

Restrictions regarding social gatherings and visitors at home are not changing, with current limits remaining in place.

If you're choosing to go out, have a look at the latest COVID-19 advice and social-distancing guidelines from the Department of Health.

  • Top image: Brisbane City Council via Flickr.

Published on April 26, 2020 by Sarah Ward


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