Flood preparation support for local businesses

IN partnership with the Fraser Coast Disaster Coordination Centre, flood preparation is underway for the newly established 'Lower Kent Street Business Network'.

Following a request to the Mayor, Cr Gerard O'Connell, earlier in the year to address restricted access to business premises, over 20 personnel passes and a number of vehicle priority passes have been issued to key lower Kent Street business representatives in the interests of safety and disaster recovery.

Mr Doc Dooley, Manager of the Kent Street Slipway in Maryborough said he had valued a constructive working relationship with the Disaster Coordination Centre for many years and now welcomed a broader network of business to work together through a flood,

"The Slipway is an ideal monitoring zone for the rate of river rises combined with a number of factors such as the Bureau of Meteorology advice, catchment levels, tides, feeder creeks, newly installed cameras and years of experience.

"The 'Lower Kent Street Business Network' applies the advice in accordance with their own plans while working together to ensure the safety of employees, mitigating risk of damage and establishing business continuity at the earliest possibility." Mr Dooley said.

The 'Lower Kent Street Business Network' comprises of Hyne Timber, MSF Sugar, Richers Transport, Global Manufacturing Group, Altus Renewables and Sunchip Transport.

Collectively, this group directly employs approximately 700 people in the region plus utilising the services of a large number of other suppliers and smaller businesses.

Spokesperson for the group and Hyne Timber's Communications Manager, Katie Fowden said restricted access in the past had made it very challenging to ensure businesses were appropriately prepared, and could continue to operate at the earliest opportunity once safe to do so,

"It was clear from past flooding events that early road blocks with little or no warning and prolonged access restrictions post flooding caused significant problems for large businesses in the lower Kent Street area.

"Working together with Council, we have been able to address this issue so key, identified personnel from all our businesses will be able to access premises provided it is safe to do so as determined by Police.

"This is not about compromising safety; under no circumstances should the safety of employees be compromised. It's about business preparedness, resilience and continuity as soon as possible; getting large numbers of employees back to work in a flood recovered, cleaned and safe workplace.

"We are also added as direct contacts for flood preparedness and related information from the Fraser Coast Disaster Coordination Centre.

"Working together, sharing information and helping one another out is all part of living and working on the Fraser Coast.

"The innovative response from the Fraser Coast Council is very much welcomed, more than satisfied our concerns and demonstrates their appreciation for business continuity." Ms Fowden said.

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