'Everyone else at risk': Shoppers slam teens for COVID scare
Customers and business owners have told of their shock and "disappointment" that two girls from a COVID-19 hotspot had been shopping at Noosa Civic before police caught them.
Sunshine Coast police Superintendent and District Officer Craig Hawkins said the teens were taken into custody Monday afternoon at Noosa Civic Centre and have been tested for the virus.
Customer Kelley Williams, who just moved to Noosa from Tasmania, was upset to learn the young women had broken the COVID-19 rules.
"Silly girls, I just can't believe that people don't care about other people," she said.
"I just can't believe they'd do that when they know that they've come from a hotspot.
"They should at least do what they're told to do."
Customer Jenny Wagg was shopping in the centre this afternoon when she noticed "half" of the stores had shut.
"It just looked too suspicious for half the shops to be closed and most of the people working there wearing masks, and there's no signage saying what's going on at all," she said.
Ms Wagg's first reaction was that the closures were COVID-19 related, wanting to leave the store to avoid the suspected risk.
"I thought 'why be in this situation, you just don't know'," she said.
Although she was "very disappointed" to learn of the teens' breach, Ms Wagg hoped the sudden shutdown would just be a precautionary measure.
"I think centre management should have some sort of signage up on the door, letting people know (and) alerting them to the fact there is a possible COVID scare in the building," she said.
"I think it's very disappointing.
"We've had just nothing here in Noosa, we've been relatively free of COVID, and it just was so suspicious when I walked into the building."
A Peregian woman at the Civic bus stop was on her way home from work and was upset that she might now have to be tested.
"It's terrible. It would take just one rotten apple to undo everything," she said.
Another Noosa shopper entering the centre said she had heard about breach, but had some important shopping to do and could not stay away.
"I have to be here, I have to collect something for my husband, I don't have a choice," she said.
An elderly Tewantin couple said they'd only just heard of the breach before they came in to shop.
"They're putting everyone else at risk," the woman said.
"Absolutely they are, why can't people do the right thing.
"We've kept pretty much to ourselves and isolated as we've been advised to do for people our age."
City Beach Surf Shop was one of the stores to close their doors.
Store manager Eva Fowler confirmed the two teens had been into the store.
Team members initially alerted Ms Fowler to the girls because they "were acting suspiciously".
They did not buy anything, but they did touch several pieces of merchandise and were not wearing masks, according to Ms Fowler.
She confirmed everything the teens had touched had since been cleaned.
A Civic spokeswoman told the Daily centre management were aware of the police incident.
"The centre management team is co-operating with police and their directions. The centre is open and operating as per normal," she said.