18 February 2011

Queensland Flood Sequel: Call for a five-level warning system

Cr Paul Tully

The Courier-Mail, Friday 18 February 2011
By Michael Madigan

ONE of the first submissions to the Queensland Flood Inquiry calls for an Australia- wide flood warning system mirroring the five categories defining tropical cyclones.

The submission, lodged around midday yesterday, suggests floods urgently need a public re-badging to better reflect their danger.

The sliding scale of category one to category five already understood by most Australians best conveys the gravity of an impending flood, says the submission by Ipswich councillor Paul Tully.

Cr Tully, who suffered devastating personal losses in the floods, is one of the first public figures to take the opportunity to deliver a brief to the inquiry.

Cr Tully said his up-river community of Goodna was not fully warned of the impending flood because of the old 20th century reliance on readings from the Port Office gauge in far-off Edward St, Brisbane.

With help from the Bureau of Meteorology, residents were left to guess how the waters would affect their suburb.

"It would be easier for a member of the public to understand Einstein's Theory of Relativity than to decipher Queensland's flood alert system," Cr Tully wrote.

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