Peter Gutwein

Premier of Tasmania

26 March 2020
Roger Jaensch, Minister for Environment and Parks

National Parks and Reserves to close at midnight

The Tasmanian Government is determined to stop the spread of the coronavirus and keep our community safe, which is why the Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service will close all national parks and reserves to public recreational use from midnight on Thursday 26 March.

The closure of parks and reserves is in line with Tasmanian and Federal government measures to discourage the community from undertaking unnecessary travel during this time.

The Tasmanian Premier made an impassioned plea to Tasmanians and visitors to our state that our best protection from spreading the virus is limiting movements in public spaces and avoiding unnecessary travel.

We must all work together diligently to achieve this in recognition of the sacrifice made by thousands of Tasmanians who have lost their jobs and livelihoods in the aim of preventing further infection.

We know that many Tasmanians feel a connection to our Parks and natural spaces, but for public safety reasons this is not the time to travel and undertake recreation activities – especially during the upcoming school holidays.

The move follows the closure of campgrounds and other visitor accommodation on Wednesday, because they do not meet the Australian Health Department’s social distancing and coronavirus preventative measures.

These moves are also aimed to prevent unnecessary travel and social gathering. Like the closure and cancellation of recreational activities including Tasmanian sporting fixtures, aquatic centres, river cruises and racing announced in recent days, no day or overnight walks, fishing, mountain biking or other outdoor activity will be allowed in any PWS park or reserves in Tasmania. This extends to all facilities and on-site public services.

We understand that this will have an impact on many tourist operators who provide services to those visiting our parks but the safety of the Tasmanian community is paramount during this extremely challenging time.

Signage will be installed at PWS parks and reserves across the state alerting visitors that the sites are closed to the public.

The sites will remain closed until such time they are safe to reopen.

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