Coun­cil warned to take ac­tion Flood risk ‘ over­looked’

Townsville Bulletin - - News - by Natalie Wynne natalie. wynne@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au

T OWNSVILLE Ci t y Co u n c i l Mayor Les Tyrell has hit back at claims the city could be next to face a se­ri­ous flood.

Geo­phys­i­cal sur­veyor Kevin Parkes has warned un­less ma­jor mit­i­ga­tion work was done, the city could face a huge disas­ter.

Mr Parkes raised his fears with the on­line Queens­land Flood In­quiry.

‘‘ The lack of in­ter­est coun­cil has taken to this se­ri­ous prob­lem has been a to­tal abom­i­na­tion,’’ he said.

‘‘ They’ve not done any­thing to mit­i­gate ma­jor flood­ing is­sues at all. They go out of their way to put drains in so the small amount of rain and flood­ing goes away to keep the pub­lic happy.’’

Mayor Les Tyrell said

flood mit­i­ga­tion was a coun­cil plan­ning.

‘‘ The city is built on a flood plain of the Ross River with the dam our pri­mary pro­tec­tion,’’ he said.

‘‘ The most sig­nif­i­cant flood pro­tec­tion work in re­cent years was the $ 115 mil­lion up­grade of the Ross River Dam which takes it to the high­est in­ter­na­tional stan­dards for dam safety.’’

Mr Parkes said there were ma­jor con­cerns for ar­eas sur­round­ing the Ross and Bohle rivers.

‘‘ Just look­ing at the Up­per Ross area go­ing into Kir­wan there are 20,000 peo­ple who are un­pro­tected by lack of mit­i­ga­tion works,’’ he said.

‘‘ None of the mit­i­ga­tion op­tions pro­posed in the Bohle River Flooplain Man­age­ment Study were car­ried out. They got a con­sul­tant to do a re­port on flood mit­i­ga­tion and they tabled pos­si­ble op­tions but they didn’t act on

vi­tal

part

of any op­tions pre­sented to them.’’

Cr Tyrell said coun­cil was lis­ten­ing and had un­der­taken stud­ies and acted on them.

‘‘ The coun­cil has also un­der­taken flood stud­ies and flood mod­el­ling in re­cent years to fur­ther safe­guard the city against flood and to de­velop strate­gies for mit­i­ga­tion work,’’ he said.

‘‘ These stud­ies in­cluded a Flood Mit­i­ga­tion Strat­egy of the en­tire city which we ini­ti­ated im­me­di­ately af­ter amal­ga­ma­tion, which has re­sulted in the re­cent com­ple­tion of the Bohle River Flood Plain Study, and the Ross River Flood Study which is un­der way at present.’’

Mr Parkes said coun­cil had so far re­fused to ac­knowl­edge his claims.

‘‘ I’ve been mak­ing my con­cerns clear for years,’’ he said. ‘‘ They do what all coun­cils do and try to ap­pease your con­cerns with serv­ing words and that’s it, there’s been no ac­tion.’’

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