Non-essential FIFO travel has been banned until January 22.
Non-essential FIFO travel has been banned until January 22.

FIFO travel restricted to prevent COVID entering mines

A three-day ban on non-essential FIFO travel from Greater Brisbane into Queensland's mining regions has been extended to help contain the spread of COVID-19.

Mining and gas companies immediately and voluntarily put a three-day hold on regional travel from Greater Brisbane during the 72-hour weekend lockdown; unless essential from a safety or operational perspective.

Although the Brisbane lockdown ended at 6pm Monday, the industry has decided to continue to limit non-essential FIFO travel until January 22.

Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane said the resources sector was committed to doing everything it could to prevent the spread of COVID.

"As a result, 60 per cent fewer workers will be travelling to regional Queensland from the Greater Brisbane area this week, falling from the usual 3500 people to under 1500," Mr Macfarlane said.

"I'm really proud of the way mining and gas companies have responded to this latest COVID challenge because the state economy and hundreds of thousands of people are depending on us to do the right thing.

"The resources sector contributed $82.6 billion to the Queensland economy in the past financial year and employs an estimated 420,000 people, so that's a lot of people who are affected by our decisions."



Harry Bruce's comedic take on a COVID-riddled year

POLLIE PROMISES 2020: What they did and didn't deliver

Mine safety: Disasters, tragedies and triumphs of 2020

THRIVED OR DIVED: How 32 Mackay businesses fared in 2020

FULL LIST: The bites and stings through our ED this year


Mr Macfarlane said QRC would continue to offer employees of member companies pre-flight health checks and temperature testing at the Brisbane Airport, with many companies also offering on-site testing.

He said the resources sector was an 'essential industry' which meant eligible FIFO workers could continue to travel within Queensland and interstate in line with previously agreed strict protocols.

"We are not taking anything for granted and will continue to do everything in our power to keep people safe by following all the necessary protocols," he said.

"I am urging people who work in resources to continue to maintain a high level of COVID awareness by social distancing where possible, maintaining strict hand hygiene and ceasing all non-essential social contact or group gatherings."

"Our industry and every Queenslander depends on all of us doing the right thing."


Subscriber benefits:

WATCH: Your guide to reading the Daily Mercury online

Your questions about the new Daily Mercury format answered

Daily puzzles and Sudoku another reason to stay subscribed


Share your thoughts on this issue through a letter to the editor:

Daily Mercury

Whitsunday Times