FNQ’s taste of freedom a success
AFTER nearly two months of coronavirus lockdown, the Far North has earned a solid A- for pulling together during the Labour Day long weekend.
As of yesterday, Queensland Police had recorded no fines issued for breaching public health directions.
"There have been no problems at all," Chief Superintendent Brian Huxley said.
"There were no issues identified by us at all and no complaints recorded."
Police had attended anticipated hot spots such as boat ramps and shopping centres in case long weekend crowds breached social distancing.
"My observation was that people were out enjoying the freedom that they had," Chief Supt Huxley said.
"Bunnings and Cairns Central appeared to have done very well."
There were a few hiccups along the way, however - it is understood that more than 100 cars were parked at Stoney Creek Falls on Saturday, and similarly, Goomboora Park in Brinsmead was also packed with vehicles.
"The car park was full but I don't know where everyone was," Edge Hill builder Alan Taylor said.
"People must have been socially distancing - I was expecting to see heaps of people but it was quite small."
Mr Taylor and his family took advantage of eased COVID-19 restrictions for their first group outing since late March, when the four square metre social distancing rule was imposed by the Federal Government.
"Cabin fever had pretty much set in," Mr Taylor said.
"The kids are in home schooling; it was good to get outside for some sun."
On the northern beaches, at least one large family group seemed to push the envelope when it came to permissible gatherings at Trinity Beach.
Lake Placid's Sipke Vinke was fishing with his son when he noticed a group of more than 50 people descend on the beach.
"It was out of control. I could see people coming in with barbecues, sitting with more than 50 people," Mr Vinke said.
"The group was sitting together having a good time; mostly a big clump of people."
State Member for Cairns Michael Healy said overall, residents took advantage of the weekend responsibly.
"I have seen a lot of people stick to social distancing - the next two weeks will confirm how we performed this weekend," Mr Healy said.
"Easing restrictions has to be done in stages.
"Fundamentally, people have been doing the right thing; there have been a couple of instances where people have been excited and have been spoken to."
Originally published as FNQ's taste of freedom a success