At the height of the East-West Cold War, vehicles crossing the border between communist East Berlin and democratic West Berlin would have giant mirrors passed beneath them to check for stowaways hiding underneath.
So perhaps we shouldn’t give the Queensland government any bright ideas as it battens down the borders to keep out virus-wracked Victorians.
Searches of trucks and cars for ‘smugglers’ says Premier
The Sunshine State introduced new border regulation on Friday 3 July and Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says there will be searches of trucks, in particular, to ensure that people are not being smuggled into the State from COVID-19 hotspots.
Palaszczuk said she been told by police officials that they concerned about people-smuggling in the back of trucks and cars crossing the border.
“They do have some concerns that [the] practice could be in place,” she stated. “So what we say to everyone out there is, if you are thinking about doing it, don’t do it.”
Drivers who facilitate illegal border crossings will be fined too
Anyone caught trying to enter the state illegally will face a stiff fine. Although the Australian Times has it on good authority that they will not be arrested and sent to the Siberian salt mines.
“Trucks will be randomly stopped and if you are a truck driver participating in this you will also get fined as well,” The Premier warned.
Added Queensland Police Deputy Commissioner, Steve Gollschewski: “We’ve already had people try and test the system all the way through, so we’re just going to make it really certain that people aren’t doing that.
“The real key to this is the infections are currently in Victoria. If we can make sure that none of those people who have that infection get into this state … we’re in a really good space.”
Restrictions apply to all points of entry into Queensland
Restrictions on visitors from Victoria apply to all border points of entry such as rail, sea and air.
According to a statement released on Friday, anyone coming to Queensland who has been in Victoria or another hotspot within the last 14 days will be required to quarantine in a designated hotel at their own cost.
This includes Queenslanders returning home from Victoria or other hotspot areas.
Fines start at $1 300 and can go as high as $6 000
Failure to comply with quarantine directions and border restrictions can result in on-the-spot fines of $1 334 for individuals and $6 672 for corporations.
Providing false information on the declaration or entering Queensland unlawfully could result in a $4 003 fine.
The Queensland Entry Declaration can be accessed at www.qld.gov.au/border-pass. It remains is valid for seven days.