New dashboard to help prepare for disasters in Queanbeyan-Palerang

Published on 08 December 2020

Disaster Dashboards and Get Ready logos

Just 12 short months ago, communities in the east of Queanbeyan-Palerang, particularly surrounding Braidwood, Nerriga and Araluen, where facing catastrophic bushfire conditions.

As summer’s heat began to take hold, Braidwood was entering harsh but necessary water restrictions and relatively routine rural maintenance activities such as grading of unsealed roads had to be temporarily suspended due to the lack of water in the surrounding rivers, creeks and dams.

Eventually, weeks of devastating fires and days of total fire bans and lingering smoke haze gave way to welcome rains that extinguished the fires and topped up local water courses. But heavy falls turned rain into floods, isolating communities through damaged roads and bridges.

The early months of 2020 were very difficult. They serve as a timely reminder of how harsh the Australian landscape can be. With these memories fresh in many minds, it is time to ensure we are all prepared for what might come this summer season.

Mayor of Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council (QPRC), Cr Tim Overall is encouraging families, friends and neighbours to use the early stages of summer as the start of a conversation about being aware of and prepared for seasonal hazards.

“Aussie summers are iconic. They can also be tragic.

“Emergency service organisations and volunteers do an incredible job keeping us safe, but they can only do so much. Being aware and prepared is everyone’s responsibility, whether you’re at home, at work or away on holidays,” said the Mayor, echoing the words of Commissioner of Resilience NSW, Shane Fitzsimmons in promoting the ‘Get Ready for Summer’ awareness campaign.

Get Ready for Summer reminds us all of five simple steps:

  1. Know your risk - think about the area you’re in and the types of disasters that could affect you;
  2. Plan now for what you will do - sit down and talk with your family and plan for what you will do if a disaster affects your area;
  3. Get your home ready - prepare your home by doing general home maintenance and checking your insurance coverage;
  4. Be aware - find out how to prepare, what to do if there is a disaster in your area and connect with NSW emergency services to stay informed; 
  5. Look out for each other - share information with your family, friends, neighbours and those who may need assistance. 

 

Prepare your bushfire survival plan, don’t drive through floodwater, swim between the flags, and make sure your home is fire safe this summer – these are some of the safety tips NSW emergency service agencies have shared ahead of the 2020 summer season.

In the event of a disaster, QPRC has joined forces with 27 councils across the state in developing a new online disaster dashboard that will provide real-time information to help those living in Queanbeyan-Palerang be aware of, prepare for and respond to local emergencies.

“Localised emergency updates, preparedness advice and seasonal awareness of potential risks is more important than ever.

“Our residents are acutely aware of the impact emergencies can have,” Mayor Overall said.

The QPRC Disaster Dashboard is an online warehouse of real-time, local emergency information supported by Resilience NSW’s Regional Disaster Preparedness Program.

On the dashboard you’ll find:

  • real-time information related to live emergencies
  • information to help you prepare for an emergency
  • guidance on the assistance you can access to recover from a recent emergency

 

The Regional Disaster Preparedness Program, coordinated by Resilience NSW, works with local governments to build their knowledge of disaster risks and ability to respond in an emergency.

The local dashboards will deliver information specific to the disaster risks and mitigations of localities in each pilot program LGA and provide a broad and consistent view of data from across the 27 pilot councils in the Canberra, Hunter and Mid North Coast Joint Organisations.

The QPRC Disaster Dashboard is located prominently at www.qprc.nsw.gov.au or by going direct to: https://queanbeyanpalerang.disasterdashboards.com/

‘Get Ready’ is a community preparedness program coordinated by Resilience NSW. More information is available at: https://resilience.nsw.gov.au/prepare.html