A cyclone message from the Department of Transport and Main Roads
We do not yet know the full impacts of Tropical Cyclone Debbie on our North and Central Queensland regions. Currently, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) is predicting that the cyclone will intensify and make landfall between Rollingstone and Proserpine on Tuesday morning.
TMR has been closely monitoring BOM’s advice and we have taken action to prepare for the likely outcomes of the destructive winds and flooding on our transport network.
Our employees are on the ground working with local groups and securing our infrastructure. All ports between Townsville and Hay Point are closed and marinas and boat harbours have taken all necessary precautions. TMR offices and service centres from Townsville to north of Mackay are closed today and all constructions worksites in these areas have been shut down and made safe.
We are advising public transport providers to prepare for activating continuity plans, and school bus services have been cancelled in the region from Ayr to Proserpine, where 70 schools are closed today. Queensland Rail is planning to close the rail corridor in the Mackay to Cardwell area and from Townsville to Charters Towers at 12pm today. QR will monitor the situation for rail between Rockhampton to Mackay, Cardwell to Cairns and Charters Towers to Mt Isa.
TMR is maintaining a watch on all weather developments and will keep you advised when significant changes occur. I can assure you that we are fully prepared to take action as soon as it is required in any likely scenario. We are planning for the worst and hoping for the best.
I urge you all to take your own precautions if you are in the areas affected by severe winds or are at risk of potential flooding. The next 24 hours will be crucial and we will be working with our stakeholders across the regions in preparation and in recovery.
For information, follow the updates provided at www.bom.gov.au or phone 1300 659 219. Stay off the roads if you can, and remember, if it’s flooded, forget it. If you must travel, check www.qldtraffic.qld.gov.au for updates on traffic and road conditions.
Mike Stapleton Acting Director-General Department of Transport and Main Roads