Reducing flood risks

Mackay Regional Council has a better understanding of its region’s flood and stormwater issues following the development of a draft Flood and Stormwater Strategy. 

Over the last year, council has undertaken several key asset inspections, including a condition assessment of the Pioneer River levee network.

This assessment identified two flood levees as key priorities for further investigation.  

These levee investigations along with other priority projects, such as the Mackay Floodplain Management Plan, are currently in the early stages of development.

The levees are located on the eastern bank of the Pioneer River near Ron Camm Bridge and beside the Bluewater Trail at the northern end of Nelson Street.

Infrastructure and Services Committee Deputy Chair Cr Kevin Casey said council had employed specialist consultants to conduct further assessments on the levees and determine whether mitigation action was required.

“If a severe flood event was to impact the Pioneer River, failure of a levee could impact over 5000 urban, residential, commercial and industrial properties in the region,” he said.

“While the likelihood of an event of this magnitude is rare, we want to ensure any potential issues identified in the report are investigated sooner rather than later.”

Cr Casey said council was committed to proactively tackling the region’s flood and stormwater issues.

“The draft Mackay Region Flood and Stormwater Strategy is critical to achieving this goal,” he said.

“Mackay is located on a floodplain so we will never be able to eliminate flooding completely.

“The strategy will target projects that will progressively reduce flood risk into the future by identifying and prioritising key projects based on data council has been compiling for more than five years.

“There is only a limited amount of funding available, so the strategy has been designed as a long-term approach that will allow council to determine which projects are the most important and represent the most effective and efficient use of funds.

“As part of the strategy, priority projects will be regularly re-evaluated to ensure the council allocates funding to projects that will deliver the best outcome for the community based on the latest information available.”

The draft Mackay Region Flood and Stormwater Strategy was developed by council in collaboration with local engineering consultancy AECOM.