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Commercial flights should be ‘fever tested’ urgently

Commercial flights fever testing for regional communities

Member for Burdekin and Shadow Minister for Natural Resources and Mines, Dale Last, wants all passengers arriving on commercial flights into Moranbah ‘fever tested’ as a matter of urgency.

In a letter to Queensland Minister for Health, Steven Miles, Mr Last has said that there were both health and economic reasons for preventing the spread of COVID-19 into the region.

“Currently, our mines are operating under very specific conditions to ensure that our resources industry, and the people who work in that industry, keep working because it’s essential for both jobs and for the state’s economy, especially at the moment,” Mr Last said.

“It’s common knowledge that, when it comes to health services, the resources in places like Moranbah are limited when compared to larger centres so we need to take extra precautions.”

“Workers arriving on chartered flights are already being monitored and tested and that is a credit to the mining companies who have put the procedure in place.  But, we have people arriving on commercial flights who aren’t being screened and that has the potential to cause massive problems.”

“Given the need for the economic benefits that the mines provide, plus the resources they produce and the limited health services that are available, I think we need to test every single arrival to protect the community and the industry.”

With FIFO from other states now heavily restricted, Mr Last said the danger had only marginally decreased.

Fever testing required for flights to regional communities

“My preference is for the people that work in our mines to live in regional Queensland rather than doing FIFO, but that is a debate for another day,” Mr Last said.

“Regardless of whether they are travelling from a Queensland city or interstate, right now we need to ensure that we are doing everything possible to prevent COVID-19 from shutting down our mines and endangering people who live in smaller centres.”

“I hope that Minister Miles will see the sense in this and act in a timely manner.”

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AMSJ April 2022