Police threaten QLD border worker with surfboard
A border worker remained perplexed and frustrated after a Queensland police officer allegedly threatened to fire him because he had a surfboard on the roof of his car.
Tweed resident Brian Springfield, 55, told Yahoo News he had been “too lazy” to remove his surfboard from the roof and hadn’t given it a thought as he stopped regularly at the border control post.
âThe policeman looked at me and continued to look at the roof and back down. He went through my papers and said, “Next time you pass by, don’t have the surfboard or I won’t let you pass,” “he recalls.
Mr. Springfield, who crosses the border daily for his job at Currumbin, called out to the officer, asking, “Why?”
âLooks like you’re going surfing,â they replied.
Mr Springfield again pushed back, explaining that there was no rule against having a surfboard in the car.
The officer reportedly said, “There is no rule that requires me to let you into the state.”
Jokingly, Mr Springfield asked the officer if he was allowed to have golf clubs in the car – but it didn’t turn out well.
Current restrictions do not allow residents of the border area to enter the state for recreation or to socialize with friends and family.
Any resident who has received at least one dose of the vaccine can move through Queensland or the border area for work, education, volunteering, nursing, health care or essential shopping.
âHe could have been a little nicer. Just boring, so boring. It happened to me that day, it was a bit difficult to deal with, âsaid Springfield.
Surfboard threat sparks heated debate
He took to Facebook to express his frustration with the early morning ordeal.
âI just thought I would let you know what the border cop did this morning at 4:30 am on my way to work,â he wrote on a Border Closure Update group.
âSo most of the police are nice, but every once in a while you get one like this,â he concluded the post, which was inundated with hundreds of comments from cross-border residents.
âNothing illegal to drive with a surfboard in your car,â one person wrote.
âThe bureaucracy has gone mad,â said another.
Some accused the officer of being on an “electric trip”, calling the incident “disgusting”.
âIt’s absolutely not necessary,â commented one Facebook user.
While others defended the officer, claiming they were “just doing what they had to do.”
âIt makes good sense to take off the surfboard. I would question your intention if I saw it, âone man admitted.
Workers ‘worry’ about being turned away
Mr Springfield said the strict rules “reach” cross-border residents after months of hardship and heartache.
“A lot of people lose sleep over it, how long it will take to cross the border and if you will be turned back.”
At the height of the Covid crisis, thousands of people found themselves stranded and separated from their loved ones as others struggled for easy access to medical care.
“It’s a mental thing, they don’t see the end of it.”
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