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Snap lockdown for greater Brisbane to stop new virus outbreak

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Greater Brisbane will enter a three-day lockdown from 6pm tonight as worried health authorities work to contain the spread of a virulent UK strain of coronavirus.

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Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the lockdown for people in the local government areas of Brisbane, Moreton Bay, Ipswich, Redlands and Logan, saying they will need to stay at home until 6pm on Monday.

Masks will be mandatory in public and people will only be allowed out of home to attend work if they can’t work from home, buy essentials like groceries and medicine, look after the vulnerable and exercise within their neighbourhood.

Cafes, pubs and restaurants will be open only for take-away service.

Funerals will be restricted to 20 guests and weddings restricted to 10 guests.

Palaszczuk said the measures follow confirmation late yesterday that a cleaner from a quarantine hotel had tested positive.

“There are no second chances with this pandemic,” she said.

“That’s why I’m asking people to have a long weekend at home.

“We have learned from Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales that a short, sharp lockdown is better than a long one and this a more contagious strain.

“Three days is better than 30.”

“All we can do is stay home and stay safe and please get tested,” she said.

Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said extra testing clinics with more staff had been opened.

“We want to see as many people tested as possible and people stay home and stay safe,” she

Chief Health Officer Dr Jeanette Young said it was essential to stop people moving through the community.

“We know that to stop the spread of the virus we have to stop the movement of people and test, test, test,” she said.

“Queenslanders have done a tremendous job of containing this virus for so long- we just have to keep it up.”

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