Munda Biddi Trail Foundation – COVID-19 Response

27 March 2020

The Public Health Act of WA has been updated and restrictions are now in place for all gatherings of two or more people, who do not ordinarily reside at the same premises, for the purposes of group-based active leisure (sporting) activities.

This includes off-road cycling. All organised group activities should be cancelled. Penalties are in place for those who do not follow the rules.

At this stage, individuals and their family members who reside together can continue their active leisure routines while practicing social distancing, and in accordance with the laws regarding self-isolation (if required).

Riding alone is not recommended under the circumstances. The regional travel restrictions preclude overnight rides through the regions. Please do not overnight on the Trail, whether alone or in your family group.

The MBTF respectfully recommends that you stay in, or close to, home during these exceptional circumstances.

23 March 2020

The Munda Biddi Trail Foundation (MBTF) is keen to continue encouraging West Australians to keep active and healthy – both physically and mentally. As long as the government messages continue to say it is OK to be outdoors, we will promote the health benefits of going for a ride – and being active in nature generally.

In the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation, the MBTF has implemented a policy for staff to work remotely in order to minimise the spread. Please do not visit the office, call or email us instead. We will provide updates via our website and social media.

Is it a good idea to ride the Munda Biddi Trail?

Our strong recommendation is that you reconsider longer rides, especially overnight, and delay any plans to do an end-to-end:

  • DO NOT ride on the Trail if you are required to self-isolate, quarantine or feel unwell. At this stage this applies to those who have arrived in Perth after 15 March 2020, have been exposed to the virus, are waiting for their test results or are a vulnerable person. You need to self-isolate at home for a minimum of 14 days.
  • You need to be prepared for your own evacuation off the Trail if you get sick or in an emergency.
  • Government may order a lock-down at any time which may close the Trail and its facilities, let alone transport and businesses along the Trail.

How might my visit impact on vulnerable regional communities?

  • Even if you are in a low-risk group yourself, you may inadvertently spread the virus to others in your travels.
  • Carrying COVID-19 from the Trail into these communities (or vice versa) puts their healthcare systems, their healthcare workers, and the very communities that serve the Trail at risk. Some communities have limited healthcare support.

What support services are available along the Trail?

  • Local shops may not have the supplies you need for your re-stock. (Dehydrated meals and dried goods are currently in high demand)
  • Parcel holding places (e.g. visitor centres), accommodation and other service providers may close temporarily.
  • Public transport may shut down. Avoid sharing vehicles, buses or trains where possible, especially if longer than 1 hour.
  • Transport providers and Trail angels may be staying home, unwilling to put themselves or their families at risk.
  • Now is not the time to be calling on Parks and Wildlife or emergency services staff. You must have your own back-up plan and family/friends to assist you if required.
  • If you do get sick, you will not be able to self-isolate in any accommodation along the Trail, you will need to go home.

What do I need to consider if on the Trail?

If you still decide to ride the Munda Biddi Trail, and are certain that you don’t pose a risk to fellow riders, distancing yourself from others and maintaining good hygiene is your best defense.

  • Wash your hands frequently with biodegradable soap at least 100m from water sources. When water is limited and soap is not an option, use hand sanitizer that contains 60-95% alcohol.
  • Avoid sharing food. Do not eat out of the same food bag, share utensils or drink from other riders’ bottles.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing. Use the crook of your arm (inner elbow) or use a tissue, put it into a sealed bag and dispose of it using Leave No Trace principles.
  • Keep the required minimum distance between you and other riders, currently 1.5m. Avoid shaking hands or other close contact — waving is a safer way to greet others.
  • Avoid riding in groups.

What do I need to consider at campsites?

  • Maintain the required social distancing at the shelter, currently 1.5m, and ensuring there are not more than the permitted persons overall, currently 4m² per person.
  • Use hand sanitiser before eating and after touching surfaces (e.g. water tap, toilet latch)
  • If staying overnight – use your own tent.

What if I get sick on the Trail?

  • If you begin to feel sick, leave the Trail immediately and avoid contact with others. Do not take public transport home, as this significantly increases the risk of infecting others. Ensure you have resources to be picked up and to self-isolate at home until you get better and/or have been cleared by a medical professional.
  • If you are diagnosed with COVID-19 within 14 days of visiting the Trail please email as soon as possible, detailing when and where you got sick, when and where you got off the Trail, if you visited any Trail town and any other helpful information.

We will continue to monitor the advice and Guidelines of the Australian Department of Health. For latest updates and health advice visit the Health Department. For COVID-19 updates from Parks and Wildlife Service visit the Explore Parks website and Park Alerts.

Stay safe and well – and if we all have to stay at home, use the time to plan your next ride on the Munda Biddi.