Flood gauges on Saltwater Creek to provide early warning in Bundaberg

Residents and businesses in Bundaberg will be better prepared for future floods with the installation of two new stream gauges on Saltwater Creek, made possible through $77,000 in funding from the State Government.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said this was an important announcement for the Bundaberg community.

“I met with local Bundaberg residents when I was opposition leader in 2014. I know how important flood protection is to the local community,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“That’s why my Government is developing the Bundaberg 10-year Action Plan and we’re exploring options as part of the plan. Investing in these extra flood gauges means there are more opportunities to gather information about water levels and more opportunities for earlier warnings.”

Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said having multiple gauges would allow for more comprehensive data to be collected and earlier warnings to be issued.

“Having a network of gauges will provide vital information for locals and businesses to get prepared as early as possible for any flooding through the creek system,” Mr Hinchliffe said.

“It’s about providing a greater peace of mind for the community as well as assisting authorities to better monitor any possible flood.

“The gauges would be a vital part of the proposed Bundaberg East Levee, one of four projects being explored through the Bundaberg 10-year Action Plan, to improve community safety and better mitigate the effects of floods from the Burnett River.

“We have been listening to the people of Bundaberg and undertaken engagement on all options.”

The four options being investigated are:

  • Bundaberg North Evacuation Route Improvements, which aims to improve the connection between Bundaberg North and the CBD during a flood event
  • Bundaberg East Levee to mitigate damage from a Burnett River flood within Bundaberg East, Bundaberg South and the CBD without increasing flood issues in other areas of Bundaberg
  • Upper Flood Plain Evacuation Improvements to reduce the time Goodnight Scrub, Morganville, Pine Creek, Givelda and Electra would be isolated

Floodway House Purchase Scheme for the voluntary purchase or relocation through a land-swap of select residential blocks in Bundaberg North that are deemed to be in a floodway with high depths and velocities.

Across the four options, community engagement saw:

  • 556 visits to the project website
  • 262 attendances at community information sessions
  • 126 feedback forms received
  • 132 targeted properties door knocked.

The feedback received as well as technical investigations will guide the projects to the next stage of finalising designs and costings before a further decision is made.

“In fact, further geotechnical investigations will be taking place around Bundaberg East between 12 and 17 November, to help verify ground and soil conditions,” Mr Hinchliffe said.

The stream gauges are being installed at the Quay Street Footbridge and Maryborough Street.

Bundaberg Mayor Jack Dempsey welcomed the installation of the gauges.

“This is about protecting lives, property and businesses, and these gauges will be used to inform the community as early as possible of any threat,” Mayor Dempsey said.

“It is a wonderful example of the two levels of government working together to benefit the people of Bundaberg.”

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