Travel bubble between NZ and Australia not affected by Brisbane green zone breach

Last night's Covid-19 green zone breach in Brisbane will not affect the Australia-New Zealand travel bubble, Queensland health officials say - unless action is taken by the Ministry of Health here.

Queensland health officials have this afternoon held a press conference, revealing more details on the breach. 

Queensland authorities today confirmed a traveller from Papua New Guinea (PNG) who was wrongly directed to a common area of Brisbane Airport yesterday has tested positive for Covid-19.

PNG is considered a higher risk country and travellers from that country are supposed to transit in red zone areas of international airports.

The man and his travel partner were mistakenly shown to the airport's green departure zone, instead of the red zone.

The pair spent about two hours among passengers - about 390 people waiting to board flights to New Zealand. 

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Jacinda Ardern said health authorities in Queensland and New Zealand are talking to each other about the incident. Source: 1 NEWS

Queensland's Chief Medical Officer Jeanette Young says people around the pair were wearing masks, and the table they were sitting at was thoroughly cleaned after they left.

"People did what needs to be done to keep people safe."

Genome sequencing hasn't come back yet and might not be successful, given the amount of virus detected in this man was low, Young said. 

She said the fact the man was feeling "well" and his "clear positive result" meant he was likely at the tail end of being unwell. 

"That suggests to me that he's right at the end of his illness, he could almost be nearly recovered."

"The risks are all adding up to be less and less and less," Young says. 

Passengers at Brisbane Airport (file picture). Source:

"We know the risk is always in that 48 hours before someone develops symptoms at the start of their illness."

Staff from the cafe are quarantining - but no other customers are being asked to - one of the pair is in hotel quarantine, the other is in hospital.

When asked if this will impact the trans-Tasman travel bubble, Young said "that's up to New Zealand, it's not from our end.

"New Zealand was informed yesterday and New Zealand has very, very good systems in place," Young says. 

She said Brisbane Airport officials were reviewing CCTV footage to "work out what did go wrong". 

Yesterday, New Zealand's Ministry of Health warned those passengers who arrived in the country from Brisbane on those three recent flights to monitor their health following the breach.

The three flights affected are Air New Zealand NZ 202 from Brisbane to Christchurch, Air New Zealand NZ 146 from Brisbane to Auckland and Qantas QF 135 from Brisbane to Christchurch.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the breach shows how important it is that trans-Tasman bubble protocols are strictly applied.