Brazen drivers illegally cross border defying lockdown laws

CONCRETE barriers are to be placed across closed roads along the NSW-Queensland border after a weekend of breaches.

Drivers have made a mockery of stricter border restrictions introduced late last week in a bid to slow the spread of coronavirus into the Gold Coast and Queensland.

At the weekend, the Bulletin captured footage showing a maxi taxi approaching a quiet unguarded border crossing at Ducat St border in Kirra. It drove up onto the footpath, went around the barrier and continued on its journey.

A taxi crossing the NSW border by driving around the barriers at Kirra on the Gold Coast. Picture: Gold Coast Bulletin
A taxi crossing the NSW border by driving around the barriers at Kirra on the Gold Coast. Picture: Gold Coast Bulletin

The driver now faces a potential $1334 fine or a traffic offence notice for mounting the kerb.

Meanwhile, vandals have drained water out of other plastic barriers before moving them off the road to allow traffic to flow.

The Bulletin understand concrete barriers used for the annual GC600 Supercars race will be brought out of storage to prevent a repeat of the weekend's behaviour.

Coolangatta councillor Gail O'Neill, whose division sits on the border, said she was disappointed with the behaviour of drivers.

"This just makes the job of the police much harder and if everyone just did what they were told it would make this whole thing much easier," she said.

This taxi drove across the grass and around the barrier. Picture: Gold Coast Bulletin
This taxi drove across the grass and around the barrier. Picture: Gold Coast Bulletin

"There is no reason someone should be doing this and the public need to understand the police are serious about this and they are not mucking around at all.

"If the plastic barriers must be replaced with concrete then that is okay, the police need to do what they need to do."

Under new restrictions brought into effect on Friday, NSW residents are completely barred from entering Queensland without an essential reason such as work or a medical appointment.

Queenslanders with border passes are allowed to cross.

The Bulletin is aware of Facebook pages that were last week directing motorists to gaps in the border barriers.

Drivers are ignoring the barriers. Picture: Gold Coast Bulletin
Drivers are ignoring the barriers. Picture: Gold Coast Bulletin

It comes just days after bad behaviour marred the first day of increased border restrictions.

One driver mounted the kerb to bypass barriers, territorial surfers vandalised Queensland

cars and 120 motorists were turned back.

On Friday, Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll described reports of locals using the backstreets to skip through the border as "extraordinarily disappointing".

"My message is it is extraordinarily disappointing from the outset, enforcement action will be taken, " she said.

"If you don't have a border pass, there is no entry into Queensland."

Before the tougher restrictions, visitors could enter the state provided they self-isolated for 14 days

The tightening of border restrictions was announced on March 23 by Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, following the lead of NSW, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
The states have introduced the measure as a way of slowing the virus spread.

However, the Gold Coast and Tweed Heads found themselves in a unique position because the border straddles through the Coolangatta CBD and Gold Coast Airport.

 

Originally published as Concrete barriers to block entry to Coast


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