Parks Australia

Thursday 30 April 2020

Parks Australia and the Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community Council advise that Booderee National Park will remain closed to the public until 11.59 pm on 23 May 2020.

The park closure is part of the ongoing response to COVID-19 and protections that are in place to protect the health of park staff and elders and vulnerable residents of the Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community and Jervis Bay Territory.

Park Manager, Booderee National Park Luke Scott, said they would continue to respond to the evolving situation and provide advice to visitors and the community in line with health guidance.

“Our simple message continues to be that the park is closed to anyone who is not a resident within the Jervis Bay Territory. That means no entering the park to fish, surf, launch a boat, camp, bike ride or bushwalk,” Mr Scott said.

Non-essential travel laws for the Jervis Bay Territory remain in place, with penalties up to $10,500 for any travel which does not meet strict exemptions.

Over 700 people live within the Jervis Bay Territory (JBT), predominantly at Wreck Bay Village, Jervis Bay Village and at HMAS Creswell. Residents of the territory are permitted to travel to and from the park providing they adhere to the JBT Emergency Management arrangements.

Traffic management at the entrance to the park, and regular patrols by park rangers and the Australian Federal Police ensure the park, and the territory, remain closed to those not permitted. Fines will continue to be issued to those not complying with the park closure directions.

Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community Council Chief Executive Anne-Marie Farrugia said the Executive Board of the Council continued to request that non-residents of Wreck Bay Village do not enter Wreck Bay Village, even if they were a Registered Member of Wreck Bay Aboriginal Community Council.

“This is to protect the health of elders, and chronically ill and vulnerable residents,” Ms Farrugia said.

“This decision was taken to ensure we continue to safeguard our indigenous community during the COVID-19 crisis. We thank you for your patience and understanding at this difficult time. This decision to extend the closure has not been taken lightly. However, the safety of vulnerable residents must come first.”

Parks Australia looks forward to welcoming visitors back to Booderee National Park as soon as possible.