Flood warnings receive boost

Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann has welcomed the Federal Government’s investment in new and upgraded flood warning infrastructure for the Somerset Region. Picture: SHAYNE NEUMANN

The Lockyer Valley and Somerset councils will receive a combined $600,000 towards flood warning infrastructure projects through the Federal Government’s Emergency Response Fund.

Somerset Regional Council will receive $365,000 towards 18 flood warning infrastructure projects, including nine flood cameras in various locations, and two rain and river height gauges near Esk and Mount Stanley.

This includes $235,000 for 16 new Flood Warning Infrastructure Network (FWIN) assets and $130,000 for two high-priority assets identified by the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) assets as part of the National Flood Warning Infrastructure Network Program.

Somerset Regional Council Mayor Jason Wendt said council welcomed the funding.

“Cameras and gauges provide great intel during flood events to not only Council, but to the community and other interested stakeholders,” Cr Wendt said.

“Gauges can assist with flood forecasting and situational awareness.

Cr Wendt said council anticipated cameras and gauges would be installed within the next 12 months at various locations including Esk, Lowood, Kilcoy, Toogoolawah and Fernvale.

“Locations were chosen based on information gathered during the development of Local Flood Plain Management Plans,” he said.

“The cameras will be installed to assist the local disaster coordination centre in managing its response to severe rainfall events..”

Lockyer Valley Regional Council Mayor and Chair of the Local Disaster Management Group Tanya Milligan said the region received $235,000.

“This funding will allow Council to upgrade its current Flood Warning infrastructure network (FWIN) and will see the addition of three rain/river sensors at Alexander Street, Laidley, as well as rain/river gauges at Glenore Grove and the Mulgowie Western Bank,” Cr Milligan said.

“We extend our thanks to the Federal Government for this funding injection, which will only further enhance our operational capabilities and capacity during flood events.”

Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann welcomed the investment and said it would make the regions more disaster ready.

“Access to early and accurate flood warnings can be the difference between life and death,” Mr Neumann said.

“It’s crucial to mitigate risks to motorists and residents in areas prone to sudden flash flooding and road closures.”

Projects will address local flood warning needs identified by the council, Queensland’s Department of Transport and Main Roads, and BOM for Australia’s National Flood Warning Infrastructure Network Program (NFWINP).

Councils will supply and install assets funded for their local government area, with BOM to take ownership of the assets for the NFWINP after installation.

The projects will be funded by the Federal Government through the Emergency Response Fund, as part of a $75 million commitment to the Queensland Flood Recovery and Resilience Package that’s backing numerous local projects across the state’s south.

More information on Queensland’s Flood Warning Infrastructure Network can be found at qra.qld.gov.au/fwin