Residents at breaking point as COVID evacuees move in

 

Residents who live in apartments connected to The Westin Brisbane are frustrated returned travellers potentially exposed to the highly infectious UK strain of coronavirus have been moved into a "mixed-use building" with residential living.

"If this is really an issue, and they don't know how it is spreading, moving it to a building that has residences as well is just stupid," a resident who requested to remain unnamed said.

"They've moved them, but they're also saying they don't know how it's being spread, have they pushed a risk exposure onto the residents there or not? I don't think they can answer that.

 

 

"They're not telling anyone anything, you can't even plan around it. You go to walk out and you don't know there are going to be seven ambulances and 20 cops standing at your front door."

 

Guests in quarantine at Hotel Grand Chancellor getting transported in ambulances to The Westin in Brisbane City. Picture: Tara Croser.
Guests in quarantine at Hotel Grand Chancellor getting transported in ambulances to The Westin in Brisbane City. Picture: Tara Croser.

 

Mary Lane Brisbane is perched above The Westin Brisbane and has a separate lift, pool and air conditioning systems for residents, however there is concern of potential "crossover" between the two groups in the foyer to enter the building.

"The only way in and out of the building is that same little valet area, so you've got to walk through the cops, their crossover is what you've got to go through just to get out of the building," he said.

 

 

The Westin Brisbane has been participating in hotel quarantine for several months and residents say the movement of 129 people from the Grand Chancellor into the building yesterday was "the last straw".

"I'm a supporter of the hotel quarantine program, and most of the people I talk to are the same, but put them in stand alone hotels, not a mixed-use building," the man said.

"We're not trying to say that in a not-in-our-backyard sense, it just doesn't make sense to put it in a mixed-use building."

Queensland Health and The Westin Brisbane have both been contacted for comment.

At a press conference this morning, Dr Young said each person moved from the Hotel Grand Chancellor to The Westin was wearing PPE and paramedics "treated (them) as if they had covid".

"I assure you, all of those things were taken into consideration to make sure that the 129 people were kept safe and that anyone around them when this occurred was kept safe," Dr Young said.

When asked why the guests were moved from the Hotel Grand Chancellor to The Westin, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said "Dr Young's advice was it was safe to do so, and it would minimise the risk to move everyone out of that hotel until we can get to the bottom of what the cause was".

 

 

 

 

 

Originally published as Residents at breaking point as COVID evacuees move in



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