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【澳洲】Coronavirus restrictions to ease in Queensland but more police on patrol this weekend

Extra police will be out questioning Queenslanders who are enjoying the first days of easing restrictions this weekend, as the state records just one new case of coronavirus.

From Saturday, Queenslanders will be able to leave their homes for recreation and the distance they can travel has been extended to 50 kilometres.

Queensland Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll said an extra 140 officers would be on patrol.

The officers would be concentrated in areas in Brisbane, including South Bank and New Farm Park, and at beaches along the Gold Coast.

Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll held a press conference this morning about the easing of some restrictions this weekend.(AAP: Dave Hunt)

"Police will be out an about asking if you're from the same household, if you're keeping your distance, etcetera," she said.

So far 1,552 people have been fined, including Shadow Police Minister Trevor Watts, who was fined for being at a party on the weekend.

Deputy Commissioner Steve Gollschewski said the public would have to prove itself before further restrictions were eased.

"If this works very well, and we can maintain this for the next few weeks, then we may see a further reduction [in restrictions], if we can maintain the current low transmission rates in our community."

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the state would "have to see long periods of almost zero" new COVID-19 cases before it lifted restrictions at its borders.

She announced this morning one new coronavirus case in the state.

That person was returning from quarantine in another state after contracting the virus from a cruise ship.

That means there have been no new locally acquired cases.

The diagnosis brings the state's total COVID-19 cases to 1,034, with less than 100 still active and 12 of those are in hospital.

Ms Palaszczuk said it was "some more good news for Queensland".

"Once again what we are seeing is a really great decline in our numbers," she said.

Ms Palaszczuk said the latest case was not locally aquired.(ABC News)

Ms Palaszczuk said the next two weeks were "crucial" in further curbing the spread of the disease, as the Government moved to ease some home confinement restrictions.

Testing rates have also increased in the state, hitting 3,234 in the past 24 hours.

New permits for seasonal workers

The Premier announced a plan to introduce permits for seasonal agricultural workers to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the state's regions during the winter harvest when "Queensland becomes the food bowl of Australia".

Ms Palaszczuk said it would require fruit pickers to "show where they're working and their residential plan".

"What we don't want to see is backpackers living on top of each other in these COVID times," she said.

Agriculture Minister Mark Furner said the state had declared agriculture an essential industry, exempt from shutdowns.

"With that comes a responsibility of ensuring [the safety of] not only those regions but the workers, the employers, the transporters of those workers to the locations on the farms, the accommodation providers," he said.

"We need around about on average per month 10,000 workers to assist on those farms, ranging from Mareeba, Cairns down to Burnett-Wide Bay, to Moreton Bay region."


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