Australia: Ballarat Gets New Flood Gauges

Ballarat will receive new flood flow gauges along key waterways to better inform the area of potential flooding, Minister for Water Peter Walsh announced today.

Mr Walsh said the $56,000 project was the first stage in developing a total flood warning system for Ballarat and would involve the installation of two new flow gauges, capable of transmitting real-time rainfall intensity data to a central location.

“The Victorian Coalition Government is committed to helping rural and regional communities be better prepared for future flood events,” Mr Walsh said.

“During 2010 and 2011 almost 200 properties in Ballarat were either flooded or threatened with flooding, with Miners Rest the most severely flood impacted community.

“Ballarat City Council and Victoria State Emergency Services could not accurately monitor and communicate flood conditions because of a lack of flood data collection gauges.

“The previous Labor government failed to invest in adequate warning systems and left regional and rural communities across Victoria exposed to flood disasters.

“These new flood flow gauges will be capable of sending real-time information on river height and rainfall to a central location and are an important step in developing a total flood warning system for Ballarat, which will communicate flood risks to the community.

“This first stage of the flood warning project will involve determining the most effective positioning of the flow gauges and then having them installed.”

Mr Walsh said as well as the new flow gauges, flood guides would be developed for the Central Business District, Miners Rests, Delacombe, Sebastopol, Wendouree and Invermay.

“These publications will contain important information for communities about local flood risks, flood warnings, and what to do before, during and after a flood,” Mr Walsh said.

The Victorian Coalition Government is providing $41,000 for the project through the Flood Zoom program, part of a $4.2 million investment in flood-related projects in 2014.

Ballarat City Council will contribute $15,000 and manage the project.

Press Release, July 1, 2014

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