Seqwater is encouraging people living or holidaying near South East Queensland’s dams this summer to plan ahead and sign up for notifications about local dam outflows as the Bureau of Meteorology forecasts a wetter than average season.
Seqwater saw a spike in registrations for its dam release notification service last month, while Wivenhoe Dam was reduced to its temporary full supply level of 80 per cent as part of readying for the La Nina forecast.
Queensland Water Minister Glenn Butcher said with more wet weather forecast for the coming months, it’s critical for Queensland communities to be ready.
“As always, our message is be alert and prepared and while you can, get out and enjoy the great dams and waterways SEQ has to offer,” he said.
Chief Executive Officer Neil Brennan said as Seqwater continues to monitor and safely manage full dams, its dam release notification service, combined with alerts from the Bureau of Meteorology and council-led local disaster management groups, were important resources for people living, working or holidaying near or downstream of a dam.
“We recognise information about our operations is important to the community, which is why we provide real-time dam information online and encourage residents to sign up for our free notification service,” Mr Brennan said.
“We’ve recently seen over 600 new registrations to our dam release notification service and an increase in website traffic on our dam levels page, highlighting people are alert to the above-average rainfall forecast by the Bureau and seeking to stay informed.
“We want to assure the community Seqwater is prepared for wet weather and while our dams are currently at or near capacity, they are ready for more inflows.
“When our ungated dams are full, they are designed to pass excess water over the spillway and safely into the waterways they are built on.
“Water releases from our three gated dams, Somerset, Wivenhoe and North Pine, are carefully managed in accordance with strict rules, meaning our experienced team of flood engineers and dam operators continuously monitor these dams, making and adjusting releases as needed in response to conditions,” Mr Brennan said.
Subscribers to the notification service can choose the dams they want updates for and opt-in for updates by email, text message or recorded message to landline telephone about when Seqwater dam releases are occurring, and when ungated dams are spilling or have stopped spilling.
Additionally, Seqwater has a public safety app providing up-to-date safety alerts, information on water supply levels and recreation notices for the authority’s 26 dams.
Seqwater has undertaken a range of measures to prepare its infrastructure and its people for summer storm season including: emergency exercises; regular inspections and maintenance of dam embankments, gates and spillways; upgrading equipment at water treatment plants including water filters and flushing out sedimentation basins and maintaining vegetation and trails across its recreation sites.
Seqwater will continue to monitor rainfall forecasts and water supply levels. For the latest information on dam levels, catchment rainfall and recreation notices visit www.seqwater.com.au.