Flood data from 2013 teaches region invaluable lessons

SEVERE weather is an inescapable part of living in Queensland.

Whether it be floods, droughts, cyclones or thunderstorms, individuals who choose to live in the tropical state must take responsibility for their own safety and property.

As the first cyclone of the season impacted the state this week, and the 12-month anniversary of the 2013 floods was marked last weekend, severe weather is something Queenslanders need to expect in the wetter seasons.

One year ago, the Awoonga Dam community experienced record levels of 48.3 metres - a one-in-2000-years event.

The Baffle Creek catchment was also adversely affected, impacted, experiencing a one-in-100-years weather pattern.

Mother Nature gives no guarantees, and it is imperative residents are prepared for seemingly the most unlikely situations. scenarios.

While the events of previous years have impacted affected communities, infrastructure and communications extensively, there are positives to be drawn from the experience.

Compiling intelligence from energy suppliers, government, research studies and communication providers has enabled a more comprehensive understanding of how to deal with similar events in the future.

Another key component in the development of an efficient disaster management plan is removing redundant aspects from existing modules.

Gladstone Regional Council's Mark Holmes said although recovery from previous years is was still largely ongoing, the long-term objective to combat Mother Nature was providing resilient resources that were able to withstand disaster.

"The existing studies before Baffle Creek flooding were largely incomplete," he said.

"We didn't have a thorough understanding of what elevated water levels would mean."

Tabling the events has already provided invaluable knowledge to arm communities and response units in the future.

Mr Holmes said through adversity, there were a number of lessons taken away that would better prepare the region for similar future events in the future.

"Continuing to update information and develop an understanding of what floods mean in the greater region is invaluable," he said.



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