Teamwork Ensures Community and Road User Safety

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Cyclone Veronica Our stories page 82

In March 2019, Tropical Cyclone Veronica caused widespread damage to the Pilbara region – flooding roads, spreading debris and isolating communities.
In some areas the cyclone brought in excess of 300 millimetres of rain, more than a year’s worth, in one day.

Our Pilbara Team worked hard to make the road network safe and to reopen routes to traffic as soon as possible. Where necessary, detours were established and emergency repairs began immediately.

More than 1,600 kilometres away our Customer Information Centre worked to ensure support was provided to the region – both to road users and to local Main Roads personnel, extremely busy with local matters, by allowing them time to tend to the safety of their own families and homes.

Keeping the travelling public informed was the main aim during and after Cyclone Veronica and entailed, for example:

  • 6,288 calls received by our Customer Information Centre with 63 per cent of callers choosing the ‘self-service’ option
  • 270 Travel Map updates and 46 traffic broadcasts published online
  • 1,244 kilometres of road closed across the Pilbara
  • six emergency response teams deployed to undertake repairs
  • 175 permits issued for delivery of essential supplies and services
  • three flights to inspect the network
  • 12 Corporate Crisis Management team meetings
  • 10 Main Roads properties requiring repair
  • $7 million estimated full-recovery cost.

We worked with agencies to ensure community and road user safety. These included the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, who helped us to survey road conditions and undertake preliminary damage reports. When it was deemed safe we also escorted a convoy of Horizon Power trucks through the damaged area to provide much needed fuel supplies. This assisted in preventing the potential for energy restrictions in the region.

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