‘No way’ to let Queenslanders stay on the air until next month, Minister says

The Queensland Government has defended its decision to halt air traffic services from Brisbane until February 12, after the coronavirus pandemic.

Key points:The Government says it is reviewing the way in which air traffic is operated in QueenslandA Queensland Government spokesperson says it would not allow passengers on flights from Brisbane to Melbourne to remain on the Queensland airwaves for longer than 48 hoursA spokesman for the Federal Government says a “pause” would be “unrealistic”The Government is reviewing its air travel strategy, which includes a review of the way air traffic operations are operated in the state.

It says the move will allow passengers from Brisbane Airport to Melbourne Airport to remain there for a maximum of 48 hours before they must transfer to another airport.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Government would not permit passengers from Queensland to travel for more than 48h from Brisbane.

“The State Government is taking a number of steps to address the impact of the coronivirus, including the reopening of the Brisbane Airport,” she said in a statement.

“However, the Government has not yet determined a timeframe to allow Queenslanders to continue to travel on the Brisbane Airservices.”

Queenslanders who want to travel to Melbourne can do so for free.

Ms Palasczuk says the Government’s decision will ensure Queenslanders are “in a safe, secure environment” when they return home.

She said the Queensland Government would review the way the air traffic operation is conducted in the next few weeks.

“No way to let people in Queensland stay on for longer,” Ms Palaswczuk told reporters in Brisbane on Thursday.

“This is the only way to ensure that people have the opportunity to return home, get on with their lives and get on to the next thing they want to do.”

Queers who have already travelled overseas have to leave the Queensland airspace and the Queensland Airlift Service, which operates from Brisbane, will take their place.

“We have a very good relationship with the Federal Aviation Authority (FAZA) and the Department of Transport, and I will be meeting with them to review the Queensland Airservices and the Airports,” Ms Paladin said.

Queers will continue to be able to fly out of the state on their own for longer periods of time than the 48-hour limit, Ms Paladin added.

“I can assure you we will be taking the necessary measures to ensure Queenslandans have access to the BrisbaneAirways, but that is a matter for the Queenslanders themselves.”

The Queensland Government says the decision was based on data collected by the FAZA in March and April.

“As part of this review, the State Government has also taken the necessary steps to review Queensland Airports operations, including: a review by the Queensland Aviation Authority, the re-opening of Brisbane Airport, and a review into the airway system,” the spokesperson said.

“There are no plans to restrict the QueenslandAirways operation.”

Queenlanders who were diagnosed with the coronvirus will continue travelling on the mainland, but the Government will be reducing the number of people allowed on flights to and from Melbourne by 30 per cent from June 1.

Topics:airline-and-tourism,government-and/or-politics,brisbane-4000,crawford-3161,qld,cannister-4215,qnd-4205First posted February 15, 2020 17:06:59Contact Chris JonesMore stories from Queensland

The Queensland Government has defended its decision to halt air traffic services from Brisbane until February 12, after the coronavirus…