Boyne Valley committee to help during emergencies

A COMMITTEE designed for community members to have a plan of action during a disaster and for them to garner real-time information from the ground has been set up in the Boyne Valley.

The valley's progress associations have already begun to collate information to assist in a disaster following the flood events of the last few years, but the Boyne Valley Local Emergency Co-ordination Committee will also include the support and communications of Gladstone Regional Council.

It was agreed in a community gathering of 12 people on Thursday to have a contact in each of the valley's towns including Many Peaks, Builyan, Ubobo and Nagoorin.

The committee is now seeking the interest of any community members who would like to be involved in the emergency co-ordination committee, and put forward their concerns and ideas to cope in emergency situations.

GRC human services co-ordinator Cheryl Barrett said the idea was to make sure the people on the ground - who know where the water floods - are in contact with the council.

"They would have a level of authority to tell us what's happening," she said.

Ms Barrett said they wanted to respect the work that had already been done in the community, but to also be able to broaden and strengthen those plans.

"No doubt there will be communication failings somewhere; we want to find the strengths and the back-ups so we know what will work," said the GRC local disaster co-ordinator Mark Holmes.

Mr Holmes said the Boyne Valley LECC would also help the council identify how to contact people.

"It's also for council to learn about alternate strategies and as a group look at the viable alternatives," he said.

Builyan Progress Association vice-president Frank McKee said Builyan had a plan in place.

"But what I like about this is it's a plan for the whole valley," he said.

"Builyan gets isolated from Many Peaks but sometimes these (Ubobo and Nagoorin) can combine efforts."

Nagoorin Progress Association president Ross McClure said the success of the committee would depend on who was willing to take part.

A meeting will be held at Nagoorin Hall on May 14 from 4pm, followed by a sausage sizzle.



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