Should you be travelling into the ACT from the border bubble in the coming weeks, you may be stopped not just by police, but by a tank commander, submariner, pilot, clarinet player, bassoonist or bugler.
From Wednesday, the Australian Defence Force will provide 23 camouflage-uniformed members, some of them reserves and some full-time, to supplement the ACT's Road Policing officers who have been patrolling the border zones with NSW since the lockdown came into effect six weeks ago.
The border checks have been a significant wrench away from customary traffic duties for the Road Policing team, as evidenced by the dramatic fall in police-issued speeding fines - just 96 for the month of August, the lowest monthly total in well over nine years.
Unlike the police, the ADF members at the border are drawn from a wide-ranging cohort of members who have found themselves ensnared in the COVID-cloistered waiting room on limited duties, or between duties.
Canberra's Federation Guard, used for marches, gunnery, drills and providing the music for the many ceremonial occasions held in Canberra and elsewhere, has found itself with plenty of free time lately, given official Defence Force ceremonies - public ones, at least - are suspended until further notice.
Colonel John Brennan, a reservist who usually works with the Department of Veterans' Affairs, has been drawn in to run the Canberra-based Joint Task Group 629.9, based out of Fairbairn.
"We looked around the group to see who was available," he said.
"So for this tasking we have a people from a wide range of ADF roles, some of them musicians; we're basically trying to make the best use of available resources.
"These are all Canberra-based people, and what's happening here is not unlike what is happening elsewhere around the country where the ADF has been asked to perform support and logistics roles for police during the pandemic."
Detective acting Superintendent Donna Hofmeier, in charge of police traffic operations, said the ADF members were a welcome addition and she was looking forward to working with them.
The defence personnel don't have the same authorised powers as police to turn cars back, but will instead be used for marshalling and directing traffic as people enter the territory.
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Superintendent Hofmeier warned people who for whatever reason may be considering rat-running an alternative route into the territory - one of the estimated 67 entry points from NSW to the ACT - that "in the next few weeks we will be on borders throughout the ACT, just not the major borders".
"It is always a challenge when an extra [border] duty is put on, but we always manage to do our business as usual, including responding to serious complaints, major incidents, collisions and the like," she said.
"We will be working throughout the next four weeks on a roster system [with the ADF] and we will assess and reassess and use intelligence to deploy people as required."
She said the ADF members will be of great assistance in keeping the traffic flowing through the busiest border checks, such as the Federal Highway entry point, with a minimal amount of hold-ups. The ACT government will also be providing additional traffic warning signs where required.
Within the first hour of joint operation, two vehicles were turned around on the Federal Highway on Wednesday. One was a truck driver who had not had a mandatory COVID test, and another was a driver from outside the border bubble area without the appropriate documentation.
"The key message for Canberrans is to stay the course, and only travel when you need to. If you leave the ACT to enter NSW, make sure you have a good reason to do so and the appropriate documentation to re-enter," Superintendent Hofmeier said.
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