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BRISBANE FLOODS: IMPORTANT INFORMATION
January 14, 2011
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In order to keep information regarding the floods in one easy to access location, we will be putting updates regarding the floods on to this page and not creating any new pages. Updates will be added to the top of the page, so newer information is easier to access. Please read through the whole page at least once to ensure you get all the information we are publishing.

A message from Lord Mayor Campbell Newman – January 15

What a fantastic turnout by our volunteers today! We were hoping for 6,000 people all day and we had over 11,500 volunteers by midday which was simply brilliant.

Council organised around 90 buses to transport them all day and although there were some initial queues, things went really smoothly.

There were so many of you that towards the end of the day the clean-up outpaced the rate at which the Army and Council could gain access into the worst-affected areas using heavy machinery. The Australian Defence Force had over 800 soldiers on the streets assisting with the clean-up – with 350 of them in the area around Chelmer, Graceville and Dutton Park and another 450 soldiers around Toowong, Paddington, Milton, St Lucia, and Bellbowrie. I can tell you that Council and the flood victims are so very grateful to everyone for donating their time to help get Brisbane back on track.

The Queensland Fire and Rescue Service also had over 360 people in the field with more than 100 trucks to help clear vegetation and pump out water. Their rapid assessment teams were going great guns and had all of their assessments done by noon today.

We will need more help tomorrow however so please you wonderful volunteers make yourselves available from 7am Sunday. Don’t forget to arrive with photo ID and the appropriate clothing and equipment at the following locations:

  • Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Melaleuca Drive, Boondall
  • Doomben Racecourse, Hampden Street, Ascot
  • MacGregor State High School Assembly Hall, MacGregor (please park at Eight Mile Plains Bus Station, a bus shuttle will transport you to MacGregor State High School)
  • Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens carpark, Toowong

Once you have filled out the necessary paperwork, a bus will shuttle you out to your designated clean-up area.

If you cannot help this weekend but may be able to assist in the future, we would still like to hear from you. I am particularly appealing to members of the community who own a bobcat, dump truck, front-end loader, water tanker or other heavy equipment that can be provided to assist with the clean-up. Please email lordmayor@brisbane.qld.gov.au and you will be contacted and provided with details of how you can best assist.
Campbell Newman
LORD MAYOR

Flood Recovery Update

Roads
I am pleased to report that all major arterial roads have now been re-opened, apart from Coronation Drive which is partially closed outbound pending engineering inspections. If you want to get home quicker please use Milton Road outbound instead of Coronation Drive to improve traffic flow. Street inspections are completed with Council officers having inspected for damage about 1500 streets since the floodwaters dropped.

By this morning over 60 major roads had been re-opened. The big challenge now is the bus way tunnel on Melbourne Street in South Brisbane which has had water pumped out of it but will remain closed until Energex can restore power. Whilst the majority of traffic signals are back working, residents are urged to drive with caution through intersections where traffic signals are obviously still offline.

Waste collection
So far Council has managed to get 160 industrial bins and skips into 42 flood affected areas around Brisbane to collect perishable items. The rubbish is mounting up with 5000 residents using our transfer stations yesterday to dump 2083 tonnes. I expect there will be a lot more once we send in the trucks to remove debris from people’s homes.

All other rubbish and debris can be placed on the kerbside and Council will come and collect it as soon as possible. Please be mindful of fire hydrants located on footpaths, do not cover them with rubbish or waste furniture as these hydrants will need to be accessed quickly in the event of a fire.

SCIP bins are also being delivered in areas not affected by flooding, for the people who may have lost power and had fridges and freezers fail as a result. Removing that rotting food is our highest priority.

For those residents that wish to transport their own waste, Council’ s tipping stations are open for free from 6am to 9pm each day. A new dumping location has been established on land at the Willawong transfer station because of the rate that dump is filling up.

Here are our dumping locations:

  • 1402 Nudgee Road, Nudgee
  • 360 Sherbrook Road, Willawong
  • 101 Upper Kedron Road, Ferny Grove
  • Tilley Road, Chandler (opposite the Sleeman Sports Complex)

Water
We have been advised by the State Government’s Queensland Urban Utilities that water in the greater Brisbane area is perfectly safe to drink. However those residents living in non flood affected areas are urged to conserve their own water use as we need to save water for the flood victims to clean their own homes.

QUU has 90 work crews out across Brisbane and 50 people working to get the Oxley water treatment plant going again. Council is giving a $100 rebate to cover the cost of water used by flood victims, which equates to about 50,000 litres of free water per flood-affected household.

The Brisbane River is still a dangerous place to be with 3500 cubic metres of water a second being released from Wivenhoe Dam, and raw sewerage in floodwaters and the river.

SEQ Water needs to lower dam levels to make room for more rain predicted next week and they are doing a good job. So far Somerset Dam, which feeds into Wivenhoe, is down to 129 per cent of its capacity (from 200 per cent) and Wivenhoe is down to 163 per cent of capacity.

Electricity
As floodwaters recede, Energex is working hard to return power to as many homes as possible. Currently there are 250 crews on the ground. Please use caution when hosing down your property to avoid any electrical equipment or appliances and always ensure that your have your property checked by a qualified electrician before using appliances.

Recovery Centres
Recovery Centres have been set up across the city to assist flood affected residents with the processing of Centrelink and State Government payments, as well as onsite banking and counselling services.

The Centres are open from 8:30am and 5pm and are located at:

  • QEII Sports Complex Kessels Road, Mt Gravatt
  • RNA Showgrounds Gregory Terrace, Bowen Hills
  • Indooroopilly Catholic Church Hall Corner of Ward and Fairley Streets, Indooroopilly
  • Yeronga State School Villa Street, Yeronga
  • St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School Ruthven Street, Corinda
  • East Brisbane Anglican Church 455 Main Street, Kangaroo Point

Jamboree Heights State School 35 Beanland Street, Jamboree Heights will be open from tomorrow Sunday 16th.

Buses
For information on public transport and affected services, please visit the TransLink website at www.translink.com.au or phone 13 12 30.

Accommodation Required
We have a new Ukrainian Family with one child from Graceville needing accomodation for two weeks while their place is cleaned and dries out.

If anyone can assist with finding them accommodation, let me know. Please contact UCQ President, Stephen Chomyn on 0437002018.
They are prepared to pay for accomodation.

Ukrainians in Queensland
If you know of any Ukrainian families that have been affected by the floods and need assistance, let us know.

We may be able to help them directly from the “hromada” or by co-ordinating with the state clean up services which are currently being organised.

Ukrainians in Brisbane
The Ukrainian Association Hall in Oxley has been flooded.

If you are able to assist our fellow Ukrainian community in cleaning up, please come to 962 Oxley Rd from 8am this Saturday and Sunday.

If you have a portable generator or water blaster (gernie, karcher, etc) that could be used, please ring Bordan Blahy on 3379 3509.
Please bring buckets, cleaning rags, mops, brooms and any other equipment that can clean mud away.
Please wear appropriate clothing, especially closed in shoes.

The water has not yet completely gone.  Bordan is monitoring the situation.  If by some chance we cannot start the clean up on Saturday morning,
Irene Goot from UAQ will send me an email at 7am to advise, and I will forward it on.

Also, please pass this message to those you think can assist.

Your help is appreciated.

Regards
Stephan Chomyn
President
Ukrainian Community of Qld Inc.

A message from Lord Mayor Campbell Newman

Make no mistake, Brisbane is experiencing its greatest natural crisis in over a hundred years. Unlike the flood in 1974, the existence of the Wivenhoe Dam has helped absorb the vast majority of the floodwaters. If not for Wivenhoe we would have faced flooding the likes of which we cannot comprehend.

As I write this the flood is peaking at around 4.2 meters. At 4am this morning, the peak measured 4.46 metres. Although it was less than the 1974 flood, almost 12,000 residential properties and 2,500 commercial properties were flooded. The damage bill is enormous and tomorrow Brisbane will begin the massive clean-up operation and we need your support.

The Brisbane suburbs worst impacted by the flooding include : Brisbane City, St Lucia, West End, Rocklea, Graceville, Chelmer, Oxley, Fairfield, Toowong, South Brisbane, New Farm, Yeronga, Milton, Sherwood, Jindalee, Tennyson, Auchenflower, Sinnamon Park, Archerfield, Windsor, Taringa, Westlake, Fig Tree Pocket, Indooroopilly, Newstead, Sumner, Bulimba, Corinda, Coopers Plains, Albion, Norman Park, Paddington, Kenmore, East Brisbane, Coorparoo, Bellbowrie, Yeerongpilly, Riverhills, Woolloongabba, Seventeen Mile Rocks, Hawthorne, Darra, Moorooka, Bowen Hills, Pinkenba, Middle Park, Balmoral, Kangaroo Point, Mount Ommaney, Hamilton, Acacia Ridge, Highgate Hill, Willawong, Anstead, Jamboree Heights, Fortitude Valley, Salisbury, Hemmant, Greenslopes, Wacol, Chapel Hill, Herston, Brookfield, Pinjarra Hills, Karana Downs, Durack and Pullenvale.

Today I announced a detailed plan to tackle the massive clean-up operation. Brisbane will be divided into five areas with the initial priority on opening major roads and cleaning up debris left by retreating floodwaters. That way we can ensure safe access to your property.

There is still a considerable amount of water coming down the Brisbane River so beware. The first properties that flooded are likely to be the last properties from which flood waters will recede.

My message to people who abandoned their homes is not to be in any hurry to return to them. We first need to open transport routes to enable access. Also be careful with electricity. You should have a qualified electrician to clear your home of danger before you seek to use electrical equipment.

We desperately need anyone who owns a bobcat, dump truck, front-end loader, water tanker or other heavy equipment to give us a hand with the clean-up. Please don’t bother to offer if you are seeking payment. We are after genuine volunteers who want to help and we will promptly respond to advise you where you should take your equipment.

For those that can offer their services please email lordmayor@brisbane.qld.gov.au or contact Council on 07 3403 8888.

Other volunteers should email their services or phone Volunteering Queensland on 07 3002 7600. You can also register online at www.volunteeringqld.org.au

My advice is you should first help those closest to where you live; neighbours, family, friends and people in the same suburb. If you are in a suburb that has not been affected by floodwaters, or you have no one to help, please contact us and we will tell you where to report to for assistance.

Buses
A limited number of bus services will be available tomorrow running about every 30 minutes in and out of the city. Do not use these services if you are not coming into the CBD for work or to help with the clean-up. These services are being put on to ensure key staff essential for services and flood response have travel options, with all other residents encouraged not to travel into the CBD.

Ferry services will not be operating until further notice due to debris in the river.

For further information on public transport and affected services, please visit the TransLink website at www.translink.com.au or phone 13 12 30.

Waste services
Waste services will resume for a minority of the city tomorrow, with other parts of the city to follow next week. The delays are due to the impact of floodwaters on depots and homes. If you have had your rubbish collections missed, your collection will resume as usual next week. Council’s waste transfer stations will be open to the public for free tipping until 9pm.

Water
We have been advised by Queensland Urban Utilities that water in the greater Brisbane area is perfectly safe to drink. However sewage treatment plants are now discharging directly into our creeks and rivers, so people should stay out of floodwaters due to potential health risks. I repeat, do not let your children play in floodwater. It is unhealthy and contaminated with chemicals and sewerage. Please do not go through floodwaters to get to your property. It is better to let the water recede and then make the journey.

Electricity
Power cuts have meant that many traffic lights are out. Some of Council’s traffic cameras are also not functioning so traffic warnings will be limited. Please be careful on the roads as water may appear in areas you do not suspect.

Sandbags
So far Brisbane City Council has given out over 300,000 sandbags. We have another 65,000 bags available if they are required at our various depots.

 

Campbell Newman
LORD MAYOR

Contacts and information sources

Energex:13 19 62
State Emergency Services (SES): 13 25 00
Translink: 13 12 30
Flood information hotline: 1300 993 191
For life-threatening emergencies: 000

Phone Council on 3403 8888 to report issues outside your property boundary such as flooding, downed trees, potholes, stormwater drain blockages or debris blocking roadways.

Due to high demand, Brisbane City Council is currently displaying a low bandwidth version of their website. www.brisbane.qld.gov.au