Muster bridge repairs
THE show "muster" go on - and just to make sure it does, Queensland Reconstruction Authority chief executive Graeme Newton came to Amamoor yesterday.
He met Gympie Region Deputy Mayor Tony Perrett and engineering director Bob Fredman at the flood-damaged Amamoor Bridge, just on the muster side of the tiny Mary Valley village.
Mr Newton said it was pleasing to see a council coping so well with its flood recovery efforts, while so many others were having trouble.
He said Gympie Regional Council was among the leaders in getting action on flood repairs because of its prompt and detailed attention to the application process.
"Councils can ask to have some jobs given higher priority and they did that last year, (when major repairs were needed to Amamoor Creek Rd, after a big collapse of much of the road into the creek).
"Then the bridge was damaged this year," he said, surveying the empty space where the bridge's footpath had been.
"We provide funds for replacement as is but the council can use that money to add to its own and upgrade."
"That's what we plan to do, depending on the upcoming council budget," Cr Perrett said yesterday.
The plan, he revealed, was for a two-lane concrete structure to replace the now rickety timber bridge, kept in safe operation only through a load limit.
"We'll be lifting the load limit, so scaffolding for the muster can be taken across," Cr Perrett said.
"To do that we will have to make some repairs.
"You won't see them because they will be underneath in the structure."
Mr Newton was on a tour of the region yesterday, especially flood-affected areas.
He, Cr Perrett and Mr Fredman continued their tour up to the region's western areas, where towns such as Goomeri, Kilkivan and Woolooga were damaged as devastating flash flooding tore down Wide Bay Creek in a flood event the likes of which no one had ever seen or recorded before.
The bridge and the road were vital links to the muster site, in the Amamoor forest, where yowies will soon be hunted out by campers and country music fans.
Mr Newton said last year's road upgrade had been brought forward as urgent works because of the importance of the muster to the Gympie Region, particularly to community groups.