Social media to play bigger role in future floods

SOCIAL media and self-sufficiency will play increasingly bigger roles in the next wet season, Fraser Coast Mayor Gerard O'Connell says.

Cr O'Connell was one of six mayors in Queensland to speak at a special summit in Brisbane on how their regions responded to ex-tropical cyclone Oswald.

The summit included presentations from Emergency Management Queensland and another disaster groups on what can be done in the next major flood.

Cr O'Connell said sites such as Facebook and Twitter, alongside traditional media, had become more important in major disasters.

He estimated the council's Fraser Coast Disaster Co-ordination Centre Facebook page reached more than 100,000 people at the height of the January floods.

Maryborough was inundated by floodwaters across both residential and business areas, while Hervey Bay was isolated for several days.

Granville was cut off from Maryborough for about five days and smaller towns such as Aldershot, Poona, Tiaro, Burrum Heads and others were isolated.

Cr O'Connell said the council was working to introduce local champions in towns and suburbs likely to be isolated in major floods.

A group of about 14 people had already been appointed to be local champions in Granville.

"We're looking at all the coastal areas," Cr O'Connell said.

He pointed to the success of the Burrum Heads Progress Association after a tornado tore through the town during the floods as an example of self-sufficiency.

"We'll just keep improving that," he said.

Next wet season

  • Warning gauges in Tinana Creek and Mary River to be improved
  • Increased use of Fraser Coast Council social media sites as a place to get official information on disasters
  • Improving self-sufficiency in towns or suburbs likely to be isolated during a major flood

Topics:  flooding floods fraser coast regional council gerard o'connell hervey bay maryborough mayor social media

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