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Outdoor restrictions eased as Young says new lockdowns are unlikely

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Queensland made another step towards normality with the border opened to more people from NSW and restrictions on public gathering and pubs and cafes loosened as chief health officer Jeannette Young said it was now unlikely that Queensland’s restrictions would go backwards.

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With no new cases overnight and only four active cases left in the state, outdoor density requirements were relaxed for businesses with a COVID Safe Plan to one person for every two square metres.

The maximum number of attendees permitted at outdoor events with a COVID Safe Checklist has been increased from 500 to 1000 people per event. The seated capacity of outdoor stadiums and amphitheatres has been increased from 50 per cent to up to 75 per cent with a COVID Safe plan in place.

Sewage testing has found a trace of the virus at Cannonvale and Health Minister Steven Miles said it may have been linked to a detection in the area a month ago, but a fever clinic at Airlie Beach would be reopened as a precaution.

The Chief Health Officer said there would be more cases come into Queensland but Queensland Health knew how to deal with it.

“We know how to manage them so we can very rapidly respond but not have to close everything down as we did back in March because we have those systems in place,” Young said.

She said there was likely to be more changes by the end of the year.

“It’s unlikely we will go backwards. That’s the big message to get out there.”

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said there was a capacity for allowing 150 more people a week to quarantine in Cairns and the Government was in talks with a second hotel to facilitate that.

However, the travellers would have to come through the Cairns airport.

It came as Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk promised $15 million for a site for the Cairns hospital expansion.

Victoria yesterday recorded two more coronavirus deaths and 15 new cases of the infection. NSW recorded three new cases, two were in quarantine and third was an older case that was just being reported. There was no community transmission.

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