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Flood texts for river residents

Amy McCosker, Tuesday July 30, 2013 - 13:02 EST
ABC image
Warning texts need to come earlier say residents - ABC

Water provider SunWater is inviting people who live less than 10 kilometres downstream of a dam to sign up and receive text message, landline telephone or email notifications during a flood event.

Rob Keogh from SunWater says the organisation is currently updating the list to ensure they are able to get information via text message, email and landline to those most imminent danger in a flood event, and that's often those right below dams.

"The local management groups have the principle role of notifying residents and they run a broad notification systems for the community," he says.

"SunWater's system is specifically targeted at those people that are in close proximity to the dams where the local disaster management groups might not have sufficient time to react."

Local councillor and landowner Peter Maundrell lives downstream from the Fairbairn Dam outside Emerald.

He has experienced inundation in the past and says more important than how you get the information is its timeliness and accuracy.

"The main thing is that people need to be made aware with plenty of time," he says.

"It's very well having texting... but with the right monitoring stations and flood boards we should know giving a couple of days notice rather than a couple of hours."

In response to questions of timeliness SunWater's Rob Keogh says the notifications from the organisation is based on water levels within the dam.

"Our emergency action plans are activated as soon as the dams are approaching spilling and those notifications go out to those registered residents as soon as that happens."


- ABC

© ABC 2013

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