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    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Local Government and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    The Honourable Mark Furner

    Plan, Prepare and Get Ready

    Minister for Local Government and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    The Honourable Mark Furner

    Friday, February 17, 2017

    Plan, Prepare and Get Ready

    Remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in the Gulf of Carpentaria and Cape York Peninsula should prepare for the possibility of extreme weather from this weekend.

    Minister for Local Government and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships, Mark Furner said the wet season brings the risk of cyclones and adverse weather with the potential for remote communities to become isolated. 

    “With the possibility of a cyclone forming in the Gulf in coming days, I’m encouraging residents particularly in coastal communities to plan, prepare and get ready for extreme weather,” Mr Furner said. 

    “Coastal and remote communities such as the Gulf of Carpentaria and Cape York Peninsula are particularly susceptible to cyclones, flooding and road closures.” 

    Minister Furner said several disaster preparedness initiatives had already been rolled out in remote Northern Queensland.

    “The Palaszczuk Government is assisting remote and discrete communities to stay informed and connected, where possible, in the event of extreme weather,” Mr Furner said. 

    “We’re working closely with all local District Disaster Management Groups (DDMG) across North Queensland to ensure remote and discrete communities are adequately prepared. 

    “The DDMG for the Gulf area has confirmed the active tropical low in the Gulf of Carpentaria is likely to bring heavy rain and thunderstorms to the Gulf Country, with potential for localised flash flooding in Burketown, Doomadgee, Normanton, and on Mornington Island. 

    “Gulf communities are known for their resilience and all discrete Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander councils have disaster preparedness plans in place for their communities.” 

    Minister Furner said stores in remote Indigenous communities were stocked with necessities including medicine, generators and non-perishable foods.

    “Local stores in Doomadgee, Kowanyama, Pormpuraaw and Lockhart River have essential supplies and are re-stocked by aircraft deliveries," the Minister said. 

    “It’s vital residents prepare early for extreme weather by securing loose items and cleaning up around our homes and gardens.

    “Motorists should avoid any unnecessary travel and remember if it’s flooded, forget it.”               

    Tips for wet season preparedness include:

    • compile a list of family and emergency contacts
    • organise a community clean up
    • clean up around your home and garden
    • decide where you will shelter – if needed, arrange to shelter with friends, family or in a public shelter or strong building
    • prepare emergency kits for your family
    • develop an evacuation plan
    • brush up on first aid skills. 

    Useful resources: 

    Wet weather preparedness: qld.gov.au/getready 

    Cyclone preparedness and safety advice: www.disaster.qld.gov.au 

    Latest advice and warnings from Bureau of Meteorology: www.bom.gov.au/cyclone 

    Current road condition information visit www.131940.qld.gov.au or call 13 19 40. 

    For emergency assistance call the Queensland Fire and Emergency Service (QFES) on 132 500 (for assistance with storm damage, rising flood water, fallen trees on buildings or roof damage). 

    Media contact: 0475 950 772