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Learn how to weather storm in evacuation exercise

PREPARE YOURSELF: A mock emergency will be held at Yeppoon Cyclone Shelter, located at Yeppoon State High School, and community members living in at-risk areas are encouraged to participate.
PREPARE YOURSELF: A mock emergency will be held at Yeppoon Cyclone Shelter, located at Yeppoon State High School, and community members living in at-risk areas are encouraged to participate. Trish Bowman

IT MAY be one of the biggest evacuation exercises to take place on the Capricorn Coast, but the best part for participants is the free lunch at the end.

However there's a serious side to the event, which is what the Livingstone Shire Local Disaster Management Group will test when it holds the first-ever Yeppoon Cyclone Shelter activation exercise.

The event, to be held on Saturday, September 27, will be conducted to give those residents at highest risk a chance to participate and experience first-hand what they will need to do if they are forced to evacuate and seek shelter.

Mayor Bill Ludwig and chair of the group said the number of residents at risk of storm-surges from cyclones on the coast was 2500.

"Obviously we can't fit everyone in, but we encourage people to stay with relatives," Cr Ludwig said.

"But it's really important we test the procedures and resources."

The evacuation centre, located at Yeppoon State High School, fits up to 800 people and the affected suburbs include Kinka, parts of Zilzie, the Causeway, Mulambin, parts of Lammermoor and parts of Yeppoon's CBD.

"Sophisticated storm-surge mapping has now allowed us to clearly identify those areas most at risk and it is those residents that we are urging to take part in next weekend's exercise," Cr Ludwig said.

"Council has recently also done a mail out to property owners in those at-risk areas to make them aware and invite them to take part in the Yeppoon Cyclone Shelter activation exercise."

Cr Ludwig said it was vital residents took the time to check if they were in a high-risk storm-surge area, understand the additional risks they face and, if possible, take part in the exercise.

"As they would generally be the first people who were required to evacuate in a real event," he said.

To find out if you live in an at-risk property and to complete an online registration form, go to http://www.livingstone.qld.gov.au/ Disaster or phone customer service on 4913 5000.

Everyone living in an at-risk site is encouraged to be part of the mock evacuation.

EVACUATION EXERCISE

What: Yeppoon Cyclone Shelter Evacuation Exercise

Where: Yeppoon State High School, 30 Rawlings St

When: Saturday, September 27

Time: 9am-noon

POTENTIAL FLOOD SPOTS

Some of the areas that could potentially flood include:

Reef St in Zilzie

Todd Ave, Whitman St, Cordingley St, parts of the CBD in Yeppoon

Parts of Farnborough and Bangalee

Parts of Keppel Sands

Topics:  cyclone evacuation centre local disaster management group



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