cyclone

EMERGENCY CONTACTS

Our first concern is for the life and limb safety of our people:

CYCLONE TRACK MAP

INSURANCE

The following insurance support measures are being put in place by CANEGROWERS Insurance for our members:

CGU Claim’s Hotline:
132 480
CGU will have additional staff manning their claims hotline 132480.

CGU Claim’s Emergency Response Vans:
CGU’s emergency response claims vans are in position to be moved into any affected areas as soon as it is safe to do so.

CANEGROWERS Insurance team on call:
The numbers for our insurance team are below, and we will get additional people into affected areas as soon as it safe to do so.
  • Phil Stace 0408 630 426
  • Mike McConville 0409 823 951
  • Rob Eckersley 0408 535 413
  • Colin Mobbs 0418 891 783

Other insurers emergency hotline numbers

  • CGU 132480
  • Allianz 13 1333
  • QBE 133 723
  • Vero 1300 888 073
  • Zurich 13 26 87

Assistance Measures under Category C under NDRRA

Available assistance measures will depend on the severity of the impact, that is, the percentage of producers affected and the percentage of GVP impacted in the "region". Standard recovery grants of $10,000 will apply where more than 15% of primary producers are impacted rising to $25,000 where 33% of primary producers are impacted.

CANEGROWERS will collect initial impact assessments as soon as possible to ensure early activation of Category C assistance measures if needed. An Agricultural Coordination Group has been set up and met on Friday.  This group will reconvene on Sunday or Monday with involvement of the Department of Transport, Ergon Energy and other agencies as necessary.

COMMUNICATIONS IMPORTANT AT TIMES LIKE THESE

In these events it becomes important that information comes through to a central point ASAP so it can be made available to all the people who need it as soon as possible. So no matter what time of the day or night please pass any information to – media@canegrowers.com.au – 0427641239.

We will post updates to www.canegrowers.com.au/page/cyclone as they come to hand.

LATEST NEWS: CYCLONE INFORMATION & UPDATES

Please send cyclone updates or photos to
media@canegrowers.com.au

or SMS them to 0427641239
.
  • Photos at the bottom of page - new photos added

All reports are anecdotal in nature and figures given are early estimates. This will be quantified as flood waters subside and actual damage can be assessed.

Summary: Contrary to some reports in the media, 90% of the crop has not been wiped out. There has been varying damage levels across the 90% of the industry which was in the path of the cyclone. Some areas have sustained more damage than others, and individual farms have been ravaged.  For a more accurate assessment, please see below:

POSTS BY DISTRICT

Mossman

MOSSMAN posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Mossman manager Evelyn Matthews "Almost three quarters of the farms in the Mossman district have been impacted by Cyclone Ita with up to 30% suffering significant damage due to flooded rivers and drainage systems, tangled lodged cane or snapped tops off cane. Flooding occurred in main rivers such as the Daintree River, Saltwater, Mossman and South Mossman Rivers and Bushy Creek in Julatten.
The cane near hillsides and in valleys bore the brunt of wind shifts.
Harvest was due to start 5 May but talk at the moment is to delay it at least one week to 12 May. If more rain falls on the coast this may need to go back at least another week.
It’s expected more farms will burn this season to try and clean tangled cane and to see what debris has been left in paddocks. This will be difficult though in flooded paddocks if silt and dirt is still sitting throughout the lodged cane. There will be a definite impact on district and individual CCS levels with the Coast and Julatten likely to struggle to get their normal average CCS range of 12.6 to 12.7 C CS. With the earlier start scheduled, tonnages were already expected to be affected but now it is fairly certain tonnage will be down to some extent.
There are trees down across headlands and in paddocks which will need clearing and considerable river bank, headland, drainage and farm road erosion which will also need repair."

MOSSMAN posted 3.22pm 13/04
Update from Mossman manager Evelyn Matthews "Intel on the coastal and Julatten cane areas: Harvest was due for early May and may need to be postponed couple weeks, as paddocks need to dry out and crops to recover as best they can. Anticipate 70% of overall farms have been impacted in some way. Where cane has been lodged and laid down impact should be minimal - although harder to cut. Will have to burn more to clean cane and see what’s in paddocks where flooding occurred. CCS will be down and tonnage. Will take longer to cut even where lodged in one direction as harvesters may only be able to cut in that direction. Debris and trees are down over headlands and paddocks – will need clearing. Expect a lot of suckering to start and go on through the harvest. At this stage it looks like 30% is significantly damaged – particularly in Daintree, Cassowary Valley, Bamboo Creek, Shannonvale and Julatten areas. Flooding occurred with Daintree River, Saltwater, Mossman and South Mossman Rivers and Bushy Creek in Julatten. Cane is lodged and tangled (due to the wind shift) rather than laid down flat – worse where near the mountains and valleys. Much harder to harvest and greater risk of reduced tonnage and CCS. Flooding will have left extraneous matter in paddocks which will need to be cleared if possible and if not sure cane will have to be burnt. Early estimates 5-10% of these area look to have taken severe damage. Tops are snapped and cane will likely be dead by normal harvest. In flooded areas stool tipping (uprooted) due to flooding – could also die if left for normal harvest. Expect a lot of suckering to occur. Could be significant erosion in headlands and creek beds due to flooding – will need repair."

MOSSMAN posted 3.22pm 13/04
Update from Mossman grower Doug Crees "Still getting power back on. Initial reports suggest that flooding along the Daintree and Mossman river and high winds have knocked cane around. It appears there has been greater damage to cane closer to the hills. The most affected varieties appear to be 237 and 231. There have been some reports of snapping in 237, but most local growers are reporting flattened cane."

MOSSMAN posted 10.40am 12/04
Update from Mossman grower Doug Cress "still windy with lots of local flooding."

MOSSMAN posted 6.30am 12/04
Update from Mossman grower Doug Crees "survived the night, still very windy, worst yet to come, plant cane i can see from my house already looks very flat"

Tablelands 

TABLELANDS posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Tablelands Manager Bronny Dwyer "Cyclone Ita’s rain has lifted the level of the Tinaroo Falls by around 10%, to 83%. The gusty winds that reached inland have caused plant and early ratoon crops to lay over but it does not appear to have snapped."

TABLELANDS posted 11.36am 12/04
Update from Tablelands Manager Bronny Dwyer "Rainfall around 6 inches from Friday morning to Sunday Morning – good soaking rain which has also provided a needed boost to the Tinaroo Falls Dam which is now at 83% (was previously about 73%). Gusty winds late Saturday morning and into Saturday afternoon has caused plant crops to lay over (photo’s attached from the Arriga area). The couple of farmers I have spoken to didn’t report that the cane had snapped. Smaller / later cut crops are still standing. Will get a better picture from farmers tomorrow."
PHOTO POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

TABLELANDS posted 4.12pm 12/04
Update from Tablelands Manager Bronny Dwyer "Little to report as this early stage.  Cyclone not expected through Mareeba for another couple of hours. So far have had good soaking rain and wind has been gusty. I've heard that some of the larger crops are laying over at Arriga."

Cairns Region 

CAIRNS REGION posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Cairns Region manager, Sarah Standen "While no damage to sheds or homes has been reported, the turbulent and silty floodwaters and the strong wind have left a mark on cane crops with up to 70% in the Mulgrave Babinda area receiving some damage, varying from minor through to major lodging and stool tipping. "We had a totally large erect crop on Friday - it was steam rolled Saturday - will cause major cane loss,” says grower Bob Rossi. Harvesting will be a challenge as the wind changed direction in some paddocks meaning stools are not lying flat in a uniform direction. "Some of it has the potential to stand up again in the next week or two if the sun comes out, but some will not. While it is too early to really tell, we know that it will stop growing for 3-6 weeks,” says grower Jeff Day.
“The big teller will be how much damage has been down below the surface if the stool has shifted, and in the area along the river whether the cane laid down before the flooding.” If there is no rain over the next week to wash the dirt off, it will do further damage to plants. Rubbish and dirt going into the harvest bins will incur cane quality scheme penalties to those within the MSF Mulgrave Cane Supply Contract and the 5-year average CCS across the region is unlikely to be reached.
As well, haulage roads, crossings and drainage pipes have been affected by erosion and will need repair."

CAIRNS REGION posted 11.06am 14/04
Update from Cairns Region manager, Sarah Standen "Mulgrave Babinda Area has at least 90% of the cane crop affected to various degrees. Not damage to sheds or dwelling that we are aware of as yet. Flood waters were quite turbulent and carried a lot of silt - dirty flood. Depending on the weather in the next few days that silt may be more damaging if not washed off the plant. Some main haulage roads washed out and erosion hotspots expected. As water drops it is expected that damage to crossings, and drainage pipes will exist. A little early to say more about the crop but I have listed the following: the extent of stool damage is yet to be analysed; wind changed direction in some pockets and this has had more of an impact and will be a harvesters nightmare; 4 to 5 weeks will pass before the cane starts growing and this will take us into the cooler weather period; Extraneous matter and dirt will be up and this will come at a cost via the cane quality scheme penalties to those within the MSF Mulgrave Cane Supply Contract; the 5-year average CCS across the region is unlikely to be reached; increased suckers and lower purity; increased cost to harvesters with increased fuels being carried by the grower."

CAIRNS REGION posted 8.13am 14/04
Update from Cairns Region grower, Bob Rossi "Severe flooding (up to 6 metres) over cane on river flats following the wind damage of gusts for Cat 2 Cyclone.  We had a totally large erect crop on Friday - it was steam rolled Saturday - will cause major cane loss."

CAIRNS REGION posted 3.35pm 12/04
Update from Cairns Region grower Jeff Day "There is alot of cane which has been knocked around. Some of it has the potential to stand up again in the next week or two if the sun comes out, but some will not. While it is too early to really tell, we know that it will stop growing for 3-6 weeks, this will increase the rubbish which goes into the bins at harvest time, and the sugar content will drop. The big teller will be how much damage has been down below the surface if the stool has shifted, and in the area along the river whether the cane laid down before the flooding. More news tomorrow."
PHOTOS POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

CAIRNS REGION posted 5.10pm 12/04
Update from Cairns Region grower Jeff Day "Another 170 mm and plenty of wind."

CAIRNS REGION posted 11.06am 12/04
Update from Cairns Region grower Andrew Greenwood "See below for some photos from the effect of Cyclone Ita - two different blocks of plant 208, 251 and 228 varieties. In my experience they will not start to grow again for 3-4 weeks after a shock like this. Some other areas in Mulgrave believe they've faired much better with very little damage to crops."

CAIRNS REGION posted 7.44am 12/04
Update from Cairns Region grower Jeff Day "have received 120mm in last 24 hours, wind is certainly picking up. This bigger crops of cane are starting to go down. Still raining heavily."

CAIRNS REGION posted 6.30am 12/04
Update from Cairns Region staff member Sandra Henrich "we have woken to the first of the wind/rain.  Don't expect it to be anything like further north, but still damaging to cane crops"

Innisfail 

INNISFAIL posted 1.00pm 22/04
Update from Innisfail manager, Wayne Thomas "There is mixed impact to the crop. An estimated 30% of the cane has been flattened, 30% has some level of impact with the rest appearing to be knocked around but relatively okay. The major rivers and creek rose but did not reach major or above flood heights. There are no obvious signs of a lot of cane being snapped and no immediate indication that cane has been up-rooted, but further inspection inside blocks will need to be done to make a full assessment. Growers are expecting water logging to be a big issue. If warm, fine weather follows then paddocks should be able to dry out but the blocks with flattened cane may not. There is some infrastructure damage to creek crossings and washouts along creeks and headlands. One grower said that it wasn’t so much the amount of water but the speed of the water. Grower Joe Marano says it appears that most of the affected cane is plant or first ratoon on former tree or banana land. “When this cane is harvested it will have increased extraneous matter and a lower CCS. The cane does not look as if has snapped as in Larry and Yasi. The wind looks as if has only come in a single direction,” he says. Some stool loss may occur during harvest."

INNISFAIL posted 5.06am 14/04
Update from Innisfail grower, Joe Marano "Did a drive around the area yesterday morning from Mourilyan through Cowley, Silkwood , Mena Creek, South Johnstone up to Nerada back to Sundown through town and home. Initial assessment is that about 35 percent of the area is sprawled and of that 15 percent is severely sprawled. I don’t know if it just more isolated to the north but I did see some severely sprawled to the south. Mostly plant or first ratoon on mostly tree land or former banana land. When this cane is harvested it will have increased extraneous matter and a lower CCS. The cane does not look as if has snapped as in Larry and Yasi. The wind looks as if has only come in a single direction. Some growers have been impacted worse than others. There was some flooding at Moresby and Cowley. The road was closed at McCutcheon at the new bridge and at Japoonvale, Liverpool Creek had been flooded but was clear at about 10am. Time will tell how bad this cyclone was."
PHOTOS POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

INNISFAIL posted 12.22pm 13/04
Update from Innisfail Manager Wayne Thomas "Wind speeds were generally much lower that area to the north and south and rainfall over the 24 hr period 9am Sat to 9am Sunday were much lower when compared to other districts in the north. The major rivers and creek rose but did not reach major or above flood heights. There is mixed impact to the crop. The general observation is that from Moresby north the crop is more “knocked” around, with estimated 30% flattened, 30% some level of “knocked” around with the rest relatively okay. To the south less flattened cane. Most of the “big” cane and particularly on new ground, has been flattened. Not much significant difference to the cane along the exposed coast. It indicates that strong gusts in local exposed areas has impacted the cane most. There are no obvious signs of cane being snapped, there may be some isolated on exposed edges of cane blocks and no immediate indication that cane has been up-rooted, but further inspection inside the cane will need to be done to make a full assessment. Waterlogging may be an issue. Like all cyclones a lot will depend on the weather afterwards. If warm fine weather then paddocks should be able to dry out but the blocks with flattened cane may not. The weather from now on, coming into winter, generally does not provide good drying conditions. There is some infrastructure damage to creek crossings and washouts along creeks and headlands. One grower said that it wasn’t so much the amount of water but the speed of the water. As with all cane that lodges, it will create problems during harvest and milling. It can be expected that extraneous matter will be higher and more dirt, which will have a direct impact on the CCS measurement growers will receive."

INNISFAIL posted 1.14pm 12/04
Update from Innisfail manager Wayne Thomas "Widespread patches of cane flattened. We are yet to receive full force winds and rain, which is expected later today/tonight."

Tully 

TULLY posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Tully manager Peter Lucy "Prior to TC Ita, Tully was set to harvest a record crop but additional trash, tops & soil as a result of sprawled and flattened paddocks will reduce the CCS content of the cane and is likely to extend the crushing season. Grower Tom Harney says Cyclone Ita’s eye passed over the top of Tully. “Advanced crops were flattened from the north west, then the south east strong winds tore it back in the opposite direction leaving some with minor breakage but we consider ourselves the lucky ones. It appears building infrastructure has escaped damage this time with few reports in on this to date." Flooding along the Tully and Murray rivers cleared quickly. Washouts along roads will need to be repaired before the crush starts in the district in June.
When Agriculture Minister John McVeigh visited Herbert River in the days after the cyclone, Tully growers reported to him that they were concerned at the mill’s ability to process the crop during the harvest window, given it was expected to already need to be working to capacity and the cyclone impact will lead to delays and complications."

TULLY posted 9.46pm 13/04 
Update from Mic Jase of Tully Mitre 10 "Not a good day for cane farmers in north Queensland, especially in the Tully area. Waking up to 125km/hr winds from Cyclone Ita (Category 1) passing over the top of Tully in the early hours of this morning."
PHOTO POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE
 
TULLY
posted 11.48am 13/04
Update from Tully grower Tom Harney "Cyclone Ita passed over the top of Tully as a Category 1 in the middle of the night with strong winds and heavy rain. This ceased at midnight and then followed by the calm eye. Well before daylight strong winds from the opposite direction hit us but in the absence of the rain. We now have moderate sized flooding upon us with the winds died down but we are unable to assess the damage fully until we can drive into the districts. Initial phoned in reports are that advanced crops were flattened from the north west, then followed by the south east strong winds which tore it back in the opposite direction leaving some varieties of cane with breakage. We had a large and well sized crop on this year which is now going to be difficult to harvest due to the majority of cane being flat on the ground but we consider ourselves the lucky ones. It appears building infrastructure has escaped damage this time but we have very few reports in on this to date."

TULLY posted 10.57am 13/04
Update from Tully manager Peter Lucy "A quick look around areas where I could drive to, and a few phone calls to growers, indicate that there is a lot of cane that has been flattened and sprawled. It will need to dry out to find out if there is significant breakage of cane.It would appear that we have a moderate flood in the Tully and Murray rivers, but as we did not have a lot of rain prior to the cyclone, flooding is expected to clear in a couple of days provided no further rain occurs. Damage to vegetation appears minimal, and I am unaware of and structural damage. At this stage the main impact will be to the harvest of the cane and the additional extraneous matter that will need to be processed through the harvesters and mill. Prior to TC Ita, Tully was set to harvest a record crop, and additional trash, tops & soil as a result of sprawled and flattened paddocks will reduce the CCS content of the cane and is likely to extend the crushing season. Further assessment will be made in the coming days.."

Herbert River 

INGHAM posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Herbert River Manager, Peter Sheedy "95% of the crop has been flattened but not quite as badly twisted and shredded as was the case after Cyclone Yasi. The Herbert River flood ranks as second highest on record at the Gairloch gauging station. The swift current has caused extensive washouts and infrastructure damage notably around cane rail and siding facilities. Gowrie Creek bridge damage was severe, cutting access for residents serviced by it and restricting the movement of equipment until repairs can be effected. Whilst an overall a loss of at least 10% of income is expected there are some far more extreme cases. Apart from farm clean up and repairs, the main concern is damage to quality of the cane with the River carrying load of fine sludge from the upper catchment into the lodged cane. CCS reduction in lodged cane is expected and the harvest will present special problems. Other significant issues are the challenge to find seed cane for newly approved varieties which have been severely damaged also clean seed plots have been hit hard, and debris removal from waterways, paddocks and around cane rail ballast blowouts."

INGHAM posted 7.13am 14/04
Update from Herbert River Manager, Peter Sheedy "95% of the crop flattened but not badly twisted and shredded as was the case after Yasi. Extensive washouts expected. Main concern is the damage to quality of the cane"
PHOTOS POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

INGHAM posted 9.46pm 13/04
Update from Herbert River Manager, Peter Sheedy "Herbert River has a major flood gauged by 12.35 metres at Gairloch carrying a load of fine sludge from the upper catchment that raises concern for the lodged cane that will pick up a layer of this as the river flood recedes. Photos from local farmer Jeff Cantamessa."

INGHAM posted 1.32pm 13/04
Update from Herbert River grower Steve Guazzo "Herbert River didn't miss out - major flood on its way now."

INGHAM posted 9.22am 13/04
Update from Herbert River manager Peter Sheedy "Cane flattened everywhere after a very wet and windy night night, now Herbert River and creeks are rising."

Burdekin

BURDEKIN posted 1.00pm 22/04
Update from Burdekin "The impact on the cane crop remains hard to assess but there is flattened cane everywhere through the region. Until the ground dries out sufficiently to allow growers to get close to have a look it is not known if the cane has just been blown over or if the cane has been snapped.
The rain and wet conditions will delay planting by a minimum of one week. Some growers have expressed concern that the stool on the cane that is down has been exposed. This may result in the stool being picked up at harvest and will negatively impact on next year’s crop."

BURDEKIN posted 1.55pm 14/04
Update from Burdekin "The impact on the cane crop is hard to assess at this early stage. There is flattened cane everywhere but until the ground dries out sufficiently to allow growers to be able to get out and have a look it is unknown if the cane has just been blown over or if the cane has been snapped. If the cane has been snapped this is an issue whereas if the cane has been blown over it will still be able to be harvested but the CCS will be lower. The rain will delay planting which will not be able to recommence until the ground dries out sufficiently which depending on soil types could be a minimum of one week. The photo below was taken at Greenacre this morning."
PHOTO POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

BURDEKIN posted 11.59am 13/04
Update from Burdekin "Photo of Burdekin crops as flat at a pancake."
PHOTO POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

Proserpine

PROSERPINE posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Proserpine manager, Michael Porter "Flooding, more than wind, has caused the most damage. Some areas are relatively unscathed, while others have whole blocks that have been flattened or washed out completely. There is direct flood damage in Kelsey and flood debris throughout the plains areas and river flats. Most areas have heavy to moderate lodging, but its most obvious to Q232 through the valley (Gregory, Strathdickie, Cannonvalley and Preston). Water has spilled over levee banks, something locals say has not occurred in nearly 40 years."

PROSERPINE posted 10.41am 15/04
Update from Proserpine manager, Michael Porter "The damage from TC Ita has varied throughout the Proserpine district – direct flood damage in Kelsey; flood debris throughout the plains and river flats; heavy to moderate lodging in most areas; stool tipping, particularly Q232 through the valley (Gregory, Strathdickie, Cannonvalley and Preston). Water spilled over the levee banks – locals say this has not occurred in nearly 40 years, certainly not since Peter Faust Dam was constructed in 1990. We have some areas which are relatively unscathed, and others where a whole blocks have been flattened or washed out completely."
PHOTO POSTED AT BOTTOM OF PAGE

Mackay

MACKAY posted 01.00pm 22/04
Update from Mackay "Torrential rainfall of 100mm - 230mm left advanced sugarcane crops vulnerable to Cyclone Ita’s winds. Big cane was easily pushed over in the soggy conditions and some of the more advanced sugarcane has very severe lodging, while the less advanced cane has either remained standing or has minor to moderate sprawling. Grower Kevin Borg says the severe lodging will make harvesting harder and slower. “It will also impact on sugar content as there will be a lot more extraneous matter going in with the cane to the mills. “We’re hoping to see much of the minor and moderately lodged or sprawled cane stand back up again with some good weather over the next couple of weeks." The lodged cane will prove less ideal as planting material due to the damage."

MACKAY posted 12.28pm 14/04
Update from Mackay grower, Kevin Borg "Torrential rainfall between 100mm and 230mm across the Mackay and Plane Creek cane growing regions left advanced sugarcane crops at the mercy of high winds from Cyclone Ita on Sunday. Big cane was pushed easily over by the strong winds in soggy conditions. The regions experienced very intense rainfall from around 2pm on Sunday to around 8pm on Sunday night with the biggest falls recorded in the more southern areas of the Central District. Some of the more advanced sugarcane has very severe lodging, while the less advanced cane has either remained standing or has minor to moderate ‘sprawling’. The extent of the lodging is still being determined as growers will be individually inspecting their crops over the next couple of days. There is damage in isolated pockets across most areas of the Central District to varying degrees. The severe lodging is going to create some issues with harvesting making it harder and slower to get the cane off. It will also impact on sugar content as there will be a lot more extraneous matter going in with the cane to the mills. Harvesting difficulties will increase costs with the additional time it will require to take the crop from the field. Lodged cane will prove less ideal as quality planting material due to the damage. We’re hoping to see much of the minor and moderately lodged or sprawled cane stand back up again with some good weather over the next couple of weeks."

MACKAY posted 8.23pm 13/04
Update from Mackay manager Kerry Latter "Blowing and heavy rain tonight. According to warnings, heavy rainfall, which may lead to flash flooding, is expected to occur between Proserpine and Mackay, and should extend further south to Gladstone overnight. Rainfall totals of at least 100 to 200mm are likely and isolated falls to 400mm are possible. As the system tracks near the coast abnormally high tides are expected between Proserpine and Mackay, but the sea level should not exceed the highest tide of the year. Large waves are likely along the foreshore."

MACKAY posted 6.33am 13/04
Update from Mackay manager Kerry Latter "It is anticipated that TC Ita will be in the Mackay area late Sunday or early Monday morning as a category 1. Stronger winds and high rainfall likely so please make necessary preparations."


Preparation information

SES preparation info posted 2.11pm 11/04
Sandbags available at SES headquarters Sandbags will be available at State Emergency Services headquarters this afternoon for Cassowary Coast residents who could be at risk of flooding due to heavy rainfall. Cassowary Coast Regional Council local disaster coordinator Andrew Portelli said SES volunteers would be on site at SES headquarters in Innisfail, Tully and Cardwell from noon today for residents to collect sandbags if needed.

The Innisfail SES headquarters is on Flying Fish Point Rd just over the Geraldton Bridge.
The Tully SES headquarters is on Murray St near Lions Park.
The Cardwell SES headquarters is on Gregory St next to the Council Works Depot.

If the matter is more urgent or if residents can't get to an SES headquarters, they should call 13 25 00 for assistance. 

 

 

Assistance for farms hit by tropical cyclone Ita

An initial round of assistance for famers impacted by Tropical Cyclone Ita has been announced by the Queensland Government. It includes concessional loans and freight subsidies.
Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Minister John McVeigh says Category B disaster assistance was available in 16 shires under standard Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.
“These arrangements provide freight subsidies up to $5,000 and access to concessional loans from QRAA up to $250,000 at an interest rate of 1.7%,” Mr McVeigh says.


“Freight subsidies are up to 50% of the cost of transport of livestock, fodder or water for livestock and building or fencing equipment or machinery a direct result of the natural disaster.”
The funding is available in the following shires: Burdekin, Cairns, Cassowary Coast, Cook, Douglas, Hinchinbrook, Hope Vale, Lockhart River, Mackay, Mareeba, Palm Island, Tablelands, Townsville, Whitsunday, Wujal Wujal and Yarrabah.


Concessional loans made under NDRRA are to help re-establish the primary production enterprise by covering costs such as:

  • repairing or replacing damaged plant and equipment
  • repairing or replacing buildings
  • purchasing livestock to replace those lost in the disaster event
  • meeting carry-on requirements including:
    • re-planting, restoring or re-establishing areas affected by the disaster event
    • sustenance
    • essential property operations
    • paying rent and rates

Mr McVeigh said Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry officers continued to work with the state’s peak farming bodies, including CANEGROWERS, to assess damage to farms and fishing businesses in the aftermath of Tropical Cyclone Ita.
Affected producers can contact QRAA on 1800 623 946 or visit www.qraa.qld.gov.au
Further details on other assistance to communities impacted by Tropical Cyclone Ita and flooding is available online at www.qld.gov.au/community/disasters-emergencies/current-disasters

Permits not required

Farmers and councils impacted by Tropical Cyclone Ita do not require permits to clear flood debris from local watercourses. 

Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Andrew Cripps says large woody debris such as dead tree branches and trunks, foreign objects such as building materials and silt around infrastructure including pumps, weirs and dams can all be removed.

“It is necessary that we get in there and clear away this debris to prevent any potential injuries or illness to the community or any damage to properties and the environment.

“These activities may also be needed to restore road crossings, remove silt from around pumps and weirs, redistribute excess sediment, restore the flow of a watercourse and prevent future damage.”

“Fallen woody debris may also be cleared from existing tracks, roads, fire management lines and firebreaks, and new access tracks or roads up to 10 metres wide,” he says.

Special arrangements contained in Section 814 the Water Act 2000 allowed for landholders and local authorities to quickly clean up watercourses affected by flood waters.

 

Our thoughts are with all those in the path of Tropical Cyclone Ita. This page will be updated as information comes to hand. So no matter what time of the day or night please pass any information to – media@canegrowers.com.au or SMS 0427641239.


Image gallery