Fire and Emergency Services Minister Craig Crawford has praised the efforts of volunteers from the State Emergency Service (SES) and Rural Fire Service (RFS) involved in the clean-up of storm-hit areas in the South Burnett region.
Mr Crawford said recovery efforts in the Gympie area had been bolstered by the arrival of 49 SES volunteers from the Brisbane Region – who could be deployed until early next week.
“I’d like to salute our hard-working volunteers who have been on the ground helping communities through the recovery phase since yesterday’s storms,” Mr Crawford said.
“The SES has received close to 500 calls for assistance, including trees down, hail damage, leaking roofs and other structural damage, with Gympie, the Fraser Coast and South Burnett the hardest-hit areas.
“Volunteers from the SES and RFS have been hampered by the weather today and will be busy over the weekend cleaning up the mess”.
QFES Commissioner Katarina Carroll also thanked volunteers for their efforts.
“Our volunteers have been working tirelessly to help Queensland communities get back on their feet,” Ms Carroll said.
“The clean-up in these locations is ongoing and we thank the community for their understanding and support as our volunteers work in the area.”
Ms Carroll said while Queensland was no stranger to severe weather, it was important for residents to listen to warnings and prepare their homes for storm season.
“Storms can hit anywhere, with very little notice, and cause extensive damage. Preparing is the only way to limit the impact of a storm before it hits,” she said.
“Take time to clean up around your home ensuring gutters and drains are clear of debris, move or tie down any loose objects in your yard, and ensure you have created an emergency kit including important items such as non-perishable food, bottled water, a first aid kit, torch and battery powered radio.”
Mr Crawford urged people to stay off the roads unless it was “absolutely necessary”.
“I’m asking people who don’t need to be outside to stay indoors, and stay away from those areas that have been impacted by the storms,” he said.
If you need help from the SES call 132 500 or call 000 in an emergency.
Minister for Fire and Emergency Services
The Honourable Craig Crawford