SAFE: Deepwater has been declared suitable to reopen .
SAFE: Deepwater has been declared suitable to reopen . Mayor Matt Burnett

Aerial tour helped give green light

THE decision to reopen the Deepwater area to residents yesterday wasn't taken lightly and required those in power to witness the bushfire zone for themselves.

It took a helicopter tour of the area on Monday to convince Gladstone Region Mayor Matt Burnett, Gladstone MP Glenn Butcher and Queensland Police Service inspector Darren Somerville that the area was suitable to reopen but even then there were reservations.

The final decision came at yesterday morning's Local Disaster Management Group meeting, when it was decided residents could return home from noon.

Cr Burnett said the aerial tour was necessary despite his preference to view the bushfire zone from the ground.

"I don't like to fly so I would have preferred to go in and look but I needed to have a look at the sheer size of this fire and the devastation it has caused to the landscape and property," he said.

 

Gladstone Regional Council mayor Matt Burnett took photos of the Deepwater area while inspecting the bushfire zone on Monday.
Gladstone Regional Council mayor Matt Burnett took photos of the Deepwater area while inspecting the bushfire zone on Monday. Mayor Matt Burnett

"You've got to take your hats off to the fireys and the three things they were able to do - protect the community, protect the firefighters and protect property - they did all of that.

"Obviously we lost a few houses but by and large this community has been very lucky when you see the extent of what's been burning and what is still burning."

 

Gladstone Regional Council mayor Matt Burnett took photos of the Deepwater area while inspecting the bushfire zone on Monday. Pictured is Deepwater looking east toward Broadwater Conservation Park.
Gladstone Regional Council mayor Matt Burnett took photos of the Deepwater area while inspecting the bushfire zone on Monday. Pictured is Deepwater looking east toward Broadwater Conservation Park. Mayor Matt Burnett


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