Now is the time to Get Ready for extreme weather
  • Wednesday 11 October 2017
Darryl Johnson QPS Cameron Herbert QFES Cathy Buck SCC Mayor Mark Jamieson Bill Haddrill SCC

Major fires and an ex-tropical cyclone have already hit the Sunshine Coast region this year, showing how important it is for our community to be fully prepared for extreme weather events.

As part of Get Ready Week 2017 underway throughout Queensland, council is encouraging the community to sign up to its latest information tool, Coast Alert, to keep up-to-date when a potential disaster event looms.

Coast Alert can be accessed via the council app and provides warnings and vital information when the region is threatened.

It operates in conjunction with the award-winning Disaster Hub website which features updates on road closures, current warnings, flood maps, evacuation centres, links to traffic cameras, and Sunshine Coast Airport updates.

Local Disaster Management Chair Mayor Mark Jamieson said a three-step approach of downloading Coast Alert, checking out the resources of Disaster Hub and undertaking a small amount of preparation now would ensure you are ready in the event of a natural disaster.

We can't afford to be complacent because recent events in our backyard have shown that the weather can change very quickly," Mayor Jamieson said.

“We only have to think back to the damage caused by ex-Cyclone Debbie when it moved through our region – although in many ways it was a lucky escape.

“There’s always the potential for other events such as bushfires and it’s fresh in our minds how the diligent work of our emergency services personnel saved us from more serious impacts west of Coolum and south of Caloundra, in particular, already in 2017.

When it comes to extreme weather events in our region, it’s not a matter of ‘if’ but ‘when’.”

Acting Local Disaster Coordinator Bill Haddrill said Get Ready Week was a timely reminder for residents and businesses to be prepared for disaster events.

“While our LDMG is always here to help when disaster hits, resources are often stretched so it’s important for everyone to prepare in advance of the summer storm season, to have an emergency plan in place, to organise an emergency kit and prepare an evacuation plan,” Mr Haddrill said.

“We need to have our gutters cleaned out and loose items secured and have a plan in place for our pets.

“And if disaster does occur, put those plans into action, tune into warnings and check on your neighbours.”

Businesses are invited to attend free information sessions later this month to find out how they can be prepared for the storm season and minimise any impacts that occur.

The sessions are at Lake Kawana Community Centre (October 24, 7.30am), Maroochy RSL (October 24, 5.30pm) and Maleny Community Centre (October 25, 7.30am).

To access all of the information on Disaster Hub, go to disaster.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au.

Image: Darryl Johnson QPS, Cameron Herbert QFES, Cathy Buck SCC, Mayor Mark Jamieson, Bill Haddrill SCC