Misinformation blamed for fevered Covid-19 actions


QTA slams truck ban rumour as Border Express becomes mainstream media focus

Misinformation blamed for fevered Covid-19 actions
QTA advises trucks from virus hotspots aren't being turned away from the Queensland border

 

Industry stakeholders have moved to quell some of the speculation disseminated during the recent Covid-19 spike.  

The Queensland Trucking Association (QTA) reassures operators that its state is not considering stopping trucks from declared virus ‘hotspots’ from entering the state, while Border Express rules itself out as the Wetherill Park-based freight company linked to New South Wales’ recent cluster.

"The rumour mill has been circulating about that trucks are about to be stopped from entering Queensland at the border if they come from a declared hot spot," QTA CEO Gary Mahon says in an urgent communique to industry.

"That is not right nor at any stage been considered.

"QTA is in regular contact with the Chief Health Officer. 

"Yes, there is always a continuing assessment of risk with Covid-19 and the recent addition of Liverpool and Campbelltown in NSW reflects that.

"We have continued to experience a common sense approach from Government and you can be assured that if anything changes you will be the first to know." 

Mahon reassures industry it has done a "marvellous job" over the last four months with hygiene controls minimising risk in the supply chain. 

He does, however, recommend firms keep staff and drivers up to date on Covid-19 safe plan protocols through initiatives like its free Covid-19 Hygiene Awareness Course.

"With the increase of hotspots in NSW and all of Victoria now being a hotspot, fleets would be well advised to introduce a regular testing regime for drivers and other staff as a part of your Covid Plans. 

"Again, this will add an additional layer of protection.

"This will require a coordinated approach with the application for the Border Declaration Pass.

"QTA has continued to express our frustration with the continuing delays at borders with the new checking procedures and we would expect some improvement soon.

"The border requirements for Queensland continue to remain the same."


The NT did remove the essential worker exemption for hotspots


Meanwhile, reports that NSW’s Crossroads Hotel cluster’s ‘patient zero’ was a freight worker, though not a driver, from Melbourne, "who works at a Wetherill Park freight company" has allegedly seen Border Express in the public crosshairs, prompting a stern response from CEO Mostafa Kassaby.

"It has come to our attention of recent media reports of a trucking company having six drivers who have tested positive for Covid-19," he says in a statement.

"Reports and pictures by the media have been centered around our facility at Wetherill Park.

"This report is completely false and untrue and I can confirm NO driver at Border Express Sydney facility has tested positive for Covid-19.

"It is business as usual as our interstate linehauls have access passes to cross over borders and we continue to support the country with essential goods distribution across the national network.

"Whilst the situation continues to challenge many organisations, Border Express continues to practice all safety protocols that have been outlined by the health authorities.

"Enforcement of safe distancing rules, regulatory sanitation, and daily cleaning x2 of facilities are in place.

"Furthermore, Border Express is registered with the NSW government as a ‘COVID Safe Business’ as we have all the right plans in place for a COVID-safe business place.

"We continue to stay close to the daily changing landscape of this pandemic. Stay safe."

 

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