Ben Robinson captured this photo of water pooling in Proserpine on January 9.
Ben Robinson captured this photo of water pooling in Proserpine on January 9.

‘Matter of urgency’: Push for drainage review in Proserpine

A review of the stormwater network around Proserpine is due to start this week after flooding has been noticed in areas not previously affected by excess water.

Whitsunday deputy mayor John Collins put forward a notice of motion at last week's council meeting requesting an assessment of the stormwater drainage system.

"I know a lot of things go back to Cyclone Debbie but since Debbie we've had a lot of issues with flooding in Proserpine," Cr Collins said.

"I've seen a lot of floods.

"In the past three years we've seen flooding in places that we've never ever had it.

"Some streets are getting two or three feet of water."

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Cr Collins requested an assessment of the stormwater drainage system to see whether blockages, broken pipes or other issues could be affecting the network.

"We need to get these checked out as a matter of urgency," Cr Collins said.

"There's obviously a problem somewhere in the system."

Division 6 councillor Mike Brunker said there could be a blockage, but the review should be done under normal asset management.

Cr Brunker told the assembled councillors the council had spent a lot of money on drainage and sometimes it was important to be "realistic" when large amounts of rainfall hit the region.

"No matter what kind of drainage you've got nothing is going to help that," he said.

The first hole at Proserpine Golf Club in January after heavy rain fell on the town. Photo: Peter Lewis
The first hole at Proserpine Golf Club in January after heavy rain fell on the town. Photo: Peter Lewis

Aside from stormwater, Division 5 councillor Gary Simpson said he had also received complaints from around Proserpine about the sewer system.

"Lids coming off in storms and sewage flowing down the street," Cr Simpson said.

Council's infrastructure services acting director Adam Hagy said his team did not have "100 per cent confidence" in the stormwater network for a variety of reasons.

He told councillors that starting this week, an assessment of the network would be done beginning with Proserpine.

"That will survey the size of the pipes, we'll get a full snapshot of the network and its performance," Mr Hagy said.

"That will help inform future budgets and will help alleviate these issues moving forwards.

"In the past looking at these pipes in isolation, we're not getting the best outcomes.

"We need to understand the network as a whole."

Flooding has long been an issue at Hamilton Plains. The stretch was again affected by flooding on January 9, 2021. Photo: Whitsunday Regional Council
Flooding has long been an issue at Hamilton Plains. The stretch was again affected by flooding on January 9, 2021. Photo: Whitsunday Regional Council

Mr Hagy said a stormwater maintenance program would also be rolled out and a stormwater management strategy was also due to be put out to tender in a few weeks.

Councillors voted unanimously to support Cr Collins' notice of motion for a stormwater drainage assessment.


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