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Newman prefers ‘immunity’ to flood-proof for Bruce Hwy

Queensland premier Campbell Newman was in Gladstone to discuss to recent floods in the Gladstone Region.
Queensland premier Campbell Newman was in Gladstone to discuss to recent floods in the Gladstone Region. David Sparkes

PREMIER Campbell Newman says the term "flood-proof" needs to be used carefully when rebuilding roads because in reality, there was no such thing.

Mr Newman was asked about efforts to flood-proof the Bruce Hwy during his visit to Gladstone on Tuesday.

"Flood proofing is very difficult and very expensive to do," he said.

"There is always a bigger flood, but can we improve the level of immunity? Yeah, absolutely we can."

He said sections of the Bruce would be systematically upgraded over time.

Mr Newman told Gladstone Regional Council that he wanted infrastructure to be rebuilt to a standard that made it much more flood-proof, so the same repair jobs were not repeated every time there was a flood.

"It is truly insane to keep doing the same things when they are not working," he said.

"We don't want this cycle to just continue. We have to look at flood mitigation. Things like roadworks, levies, relocations and raising buildings."

Speaking about industry, Mr Newman did not expect the coal industry to take the severe hit it experienced after flooding two years ago.

"The impact on the coal industry compared with last time is, I think, quite minimal by comparison," he said.

"They've clearly lost production and there have been supply chain issues in terms of rail."

Mr Newman also is "aware" of concerns about the management of Callide dam leading up to the flooding.

After the dam flooded last week, some residents asked why more water was not released before the bulk of water arrived.

"I am certainly aware of people's concerns about the operation of the dam," Mr Newman said.

"I am going to have a bit of a look at what's going on there and I will certainly be asking the Minister Mark McArdle for an initial brief.

"The Deputy Premier (Jeff Seeney) is also very conscious of that. He has had people raise it with him."

Mr Newman paid tribute to the Gladstone Local Disaster Management Group.

He said the group had shown that a well organised local group was well placed to deal with disaster issues.

Topics:  bruce highway, campbell newman, flooding, oswald



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