With the speed at which governments are imposing restrictions on COVID-19 activities, it is no wonder pubs and clubs are struggling to keep up.
In just a week, the federal and Queensland governments imposed a 500-people gathering rule, then a 100-people indoor gathering rule and then "a four square metre per person" rule.
It has left hotels, pubs and clubs everywhere in Mount Isa struggling to play catch up.
On Thursday, which was after the 100 people rule but before the four square metre rule, the North West Hospital and Health Service told the Mount Isa Liquor Accord all non-essential indoor gatherings of less than 100 people (including staff) such as cinemas, theatres, restaurants/cafes, pubs, clubs, weddings and funerals should apply social distancing and hygiene practices including being able to maintain a distance of 1.5 metres between people and providing hand hygiene products and suitable rubbish bins, with frequent cleaning and waste disposal
"There is not an exemption for remote areas. Suggest that the Accord consider the impacts that an outbreak would have upon a mine site and the pressure that such an event would have upon a local hospital in a regional setting," NWHHS told the Accord,
Bernard Gillic, manager of the Mount Isa Irish Club said venues have had to adapt very quickly to stay ahead of the requirements handed down by the federal and state governments
"The most significant of these changes is that venues can only have 100 people in an area, now toughened with 100 people only being permitted in a space of 400 meters squared or more but never more than 100 people no matter the size of the room," Mr Gillic said.
"In order to comply with these requirements, the Irish Club has made some venue modifications. Firstly, walls have been constructed that simply need to be screwed into place if an area comes close to the 100-person limit.
"During the quieter times we won't have them in use but at certain times the venue may be broken into as many as five separate venues each with their own entry and exit points and their own bathroom facilities.
"A live count is being operated for each area on the front desk 24/7
"We have hand sanitiser stations at every point of sale in the club and we have closed a few of our bars and repurposed staff to cleaning and sanitising the various venues."
Mr Gillic said every second seat has been removed from gaming room allowing the 1.5 meters between each person but still complying with regulations that prevent us from turning the machines off permanently.
The Buffs Club also remains open but are implementing similar measures to section off areas as needed.
The Isa Hotel also has signs in the premises warning of social distancing requirements.
Crowds at all venues have been done as people need the message to self-isolate.
Liquor licensing officers have been authorised to police compliance however the nearest such officer to Mount Isa is in Townsville, so it not yet clear how these laws will be enforced in Mount Isa.
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