Flooding closed Rockhampton Airport for a month in January.
Flooding closed Rockhampton Airport for a month in January. Sharyn Oneill Rokcho-S

US aid sought for airport

PREMIER Anna Bligh and Prime Minister Julia Gillard are being asked to play a part in making the flood-proofing of Rockhampton Airport a top priority.

Mayor Brad Carter says he's already written to Ms Bligh to request her help to make the most of an opportunity to get vital assistance from the US military for measures to guarantee there is no repeat of the chaos caused earlier this year when the city's airport was shut for a month.

And he is due to meet the US Consul General in Sydney next month when he will discuss ways to ensure an offer of help does not go begging.

A team of US military engineers visited the airport in March to study ways to make sure it can continue to operate in future flooding disasters.

They are believed to have considered a number of options, including the provision of levees and the raising of the runways to heights above the major flood level.

Cr Carter said he had asked Ms Bligh to request an intervention by Ms Gillard.

“I believe that to make further progress there will have to be a formal request to the US government from the Australian government. It would be a real shame for nothing to come out of the co-operation which has already brought high-ranking engineers halfway around the world to look at the problems we face here.”



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