Sunshine Coast police officer Senior Sergeant Scott Wiggins at the Bruce Highway checkpoint to prevent Brisbane residents from reaching the region.
Sunshine Coast police officer Senior Sergeant Scott Wiggins at the Bruce Highway checkpoint to prevent Brisbane residents from reaching the region.

How police will stop escapees from reaching Coast

High-tech surveillance checkpoint including number plate software have been set-up on the Bruce Highway to prevent Brisbane residents from reaching the Sunshine Coast.

The Greater Brisbane area is on lockdown for the next two and a half days, but it hasn't stopped Brisbane residents from fleeing to the Coast.

Sunshine Coast District Superintendent Craig Hawkins was confident any escapees would be stopped on the highway and turned around with a fine attached.

He said several escapees had been busted since the lockdown was introduced at 5pm on Friday.

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"There have been a few fines issued and we will continue to monitor it for the next few days," Supt Hawkins said.

"We have police on the highway, so if you decide to come to the region, you will be sent home.

"It's a $1300 fine if you are silly enough to leave.

"If there is not a need to leave Brisbane then don't. And similarly, if you don't need to go to Brisbane, then don't."

Supt Hawkins directed people to the Queensland Health website in order to find the latest travel updates and guidelines.

He said number plate surveillance was just one weapon in the detection arsenal.

"Crews can identify a vehicle and then pull them over," he said.

"Number plate surveillance is very useful, very sensible.

"There are a range of other tools we use that I can't disclose."

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Supt Hawkins said the checkpoint measures were necessary to prevent the Sunshine Coast going into its own lockdown.

"There's no suggestion at this stage that we will move into a lockdown," he said.

"But it requires everyone being responsible and not having people needlessly coming here from hot spots.

"We don't want it (the virus) on the Coast. We are putting in a lot of work to try and hold it out.

"You don't want to be the one responsible for bringing it here."

Queensland did not have any new cases of COVID-19 however a Melbourne woman has tested positive to the UK strain of the virus while on the Sunshine Coast.

The woman was visiting her parents in Maleny when she tested positive.


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