Sydney Airport footage shows a country at risk of COVID-19 infection

‘Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has some questions to answer,’ says Labor Senator.

passengers disregarding social distancing laws at sydney airport

Disturbing footage from Twitter user Sally Prosser shows just how at risk we are of COVID-19 infection, due to lax biosecurity measures on the ‘frontlines’.

Published on The New Daily on Thursday, the footage captured passengers blatantly disregarding social distancing rules designed to defend us against coronavirus.

“I just feel like it was a real kick in the guts to everyone out there doing the right thing,” said Ms Prosser.

“At the front line, there’s nothing, there’s no one even encouraging people to stand apart.”

At a time when most Australians are doing their part to stem the spread of COVID-19, it seems yet again, NSW      shows it still has some way to go in enforcing social distancing rules on its residents.

There’s currently a fight to find out who was responsible for letting 130 infected passengers off the Ruby Princess cruise ship in Sydney last week.

And footage of revellers disregarding social distancing rules at Bondi Beach was framed as a catalyst for the stricter rules that immediately followed, say some. This airport footage may well lead to full lockdown, say many others.

While Australia’s borders are closed to foreign travellers, and Australians banned from travel overseas, there are still some incoming flights for returning citizens and residents.

And, as of Thursday morning, every returning passenger must now be tested for COVID-19.

“The testing space is too small for all passengers, and disembarking is not being staggered to allow for social distancing,” said a spokesperson from the public sector union that represents biosecurity and Australian Border Force officers.

Some say this is a direct failure of government.

“It is astonishing that the government is telling the nation to social distance and take the utmost precautions but cannot take steps to assure us at our border,” said CPSU deputy national president Brooke Muscat-Bentley.

“This is a failure of planning, just like we have seen with Services Australia this week. The government has known what was coming but have just been unable or unwilling to prepare for it.”

It seems Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has some questions to answer.

“The NSW Police are taking over cruise ship arrivals. Airport queues are violating social distancing rules. The Australian Border Force is getting mixed messages and directions,” said Labor’s Kristina Keneally.

“The Minister for Home Affairs needs to get on top of our borders, today.”

Thankfully, the Prime Minister has answered the call, announcing late Friday that the army will help manage the mass quarantine of returning Australians. 

Quarantines apply to everyone who arrives at an Australian airport from midnight on Saturday, reports The New Daily, with travellers to be quarantined for 14 days at hotels or other accommodation in the state they fly to, regardless of their home state.

“You have come back into Australia, you need to live up to this pledge,” said Mr Morrison.

“The state and territory governments are going to make sure you do. And there are strong penalties for those who don’t comply with this and the states and territories are already moving in their enforcement measures.”

Does this footage disturb you? Or is it understandable? Are you happy with Mr Morrison's response? Are you confident that our biosecurity protocols are having the desired effect?

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    To make a comment, please register or login
    28th Mar 2020
    Australia was in one of the ideal situations to stay free of the virus being totally surrounded by sea. Too little, too late now. We could have been the one country to have a healthy population and healthy economy. Instead, we are "nice to everyone" and have brought the disease here by invitation.
    28th Mar 2020
    Not the only disease, social or otherwise, that's been brought here by invitation and without consent of the people.
    28th Mar 2020
    What a BIG joke this is. These people mixing around like they are waiting for a bus should NOT have occured. They should be left on the Tarmac and let in in a single file to be tested before being allowed into enter Australia. No one should have been allowed into Australia once the Borders were closed, regardless of where they come from.
    28th Mar 2020
    Typical of weak headless chook government. “ Fat belly” Morrison is trying to scapegoat a few Bondi backpackers for all the problems. Property directly under Govt control like Borders , airports, seaports & public transport are still a rabble , running amok.
    Anyone can just walk off a plane , tick a box on a leaflet & walk on up the road & into the community. The virus gets here through the borders......hello. They’re talking stage 3 lockdowns, and at this point in time it’s still a circus at the borders. I’m an Aussie living overseas,,I got temperature checked & had a detailed info report taken on arrival in a country considered as developing. I cannot get into a supermarket without a mask,temperature check & hands sprayed. That’s been happening for weeks. A friend arrived in Australia on Wednesday & told me he just walked off the plane, no checks . By the way,,,this country has not one recorded death yet & very low infection rate. Australian border control dropped the ball & still can’t find it.
    28th Mar 2020
    For gods sake people, lighten up and use some common sense.

    These people have just spent the last 10 or more hours squeezed together breathing and sharing the same air while confined in a small aluminium cylinder up in the sky.

    Any transmission of COVID19 amongst them (along with any other diseases) has already occurred.

    They then simply have their tests (which they are waiting to do), begin their mandated isolation period, and everyone should be happy

    I am truly sick of the "policalisation" that is happening in regard to this virus.
    Have we (as a planet) allowed ourselves to be overrun by the "control freaks" who see this as a convenient excuse to further their cause?
    28th Mar 2020
    Completey agree DP. Everyone becomes an expert after the event. This is an evolving situation and changes by the minute let alone day. Damned if you do and damned if you don't. Easy to pontificate from an armchair. The airport arrival situation has been solved.
    28th Mar 2020
    Bloody hell! Government to act, not pussy foot around; Jail, fine all those ignorant bastards.. simple as that
    28th Mar 2020
    Bloody hell! Government to act, not pussy foot around; Jail, fine all those ignorant bastards.. simple as that
    28th Mar 2020
    Makes you wonder how serious this all is. Apart from that, as I posted elsewhere - people are so dumb they line up a the chemist's - distance apart, and then instead of going out the aisle marked exit, they turn around and walk straight past you.

    I said to the chemist he should label the aisles IN and the other one TOO DUMB TO READ..
    30th Mar 2020
    Where's Macquarie Bank (Macquarie Airports) in all this. They make lucrative profits from the airports; how about they staff the airport properly and organise the people as they come off the plane and while the planes are on the tarmac. No one is mentioning their responsibility. Can't touch the Millionaires Bank!

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