Police District Superintendent Darryl Johnson and Mayor Mark Jamieson.
Police District Superintendent Darryl Johnson and Mayor Mark Jamieson. Kathy Sundstrom

Alert but not alarmed: Coast's Australia Day terror watch

EVEN the Sunshine Coast and its idyllic beaches is not immune to the threat of terrorism.

Police have issued a caution to be "alert" of a possible terrorist threat ahead of the Australia Day festivities.

Sunshine Coast Police District Superintendent Darryl Johnson, who formerly held a Brisbane-based security and counter-terrorism role, said there was no specific intelligence of a threat on the Sunshine Coast.

However, with the nation's risk of terrorism now at a "probable" level, Supt Johnson the entire community needed to be aware.

"We all need to be aware of our surroundings and report any suspicious activity," he said.

Police numbers will be bolstered on Australia Day, mainly to curb the risks of alcohol related anti-social behaviour.

"There will be a significant police presence across the Sunshine Coast where you will see uniform police," Supt Johnson said.

"However, we will have plain clothes police also patrolling more populated areas to ensure any anti-social behaviour is identified early.

"The message police want to relay is to enjoy and celebrate the day responsibly, be considerate of others, but if you misbehave and commit offences you can expect police attention."

Supt Johnson also warned no racism would be tolerated.

"There is no place for racism and no place for vilification," Supt Johnson said.

"Officers are aware (of the possibility) and will take action where identified."

Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson encouraged the community to celebrate the "nation's birthday" responsibly.

"Australia Day is a day to celebrate the birth of our nation and recognise how fortunate we are to live in the lucky country and, indeed, here on the Sunshine Coast," he said.

"Look out for your mates and have a word to them and get them home safely if they appear to be drinking too much alcohol, or becoming disrespectful towards others."


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