A shed is destroyed in last Thursday's tornado storm.
A shed is destroyed in last Thursday's tornado storm. Jan Mulholland

Nightmare Gympie storm not an official disaster yet

GYMPIE Regional Council has revealed the widespread destruction caused by last week's Gympie region 'hailnado' has not yet met the minimum disaster declaration criteria.

Council said it was still in the process of determining total costs of the storm, which left more than 9000 Gympie homes without power, more than 600 insurance claims lodged with the RACQ and around 2000 cars battered.

WOOLOOGA FIRE WAS NO DISASTER, SAYS STATE

Adding to the bill were catastrophic damages caused on local farms, which included more than $300,000 reported at Tansey's Rawganix farm and severe crop losses at Wolvi's Cooloola Berries, Groves' Mary's Creek avocado farm and Carlson's Mooloo bean crop among others.

- 96 hours to restore power to 9,000 Gympie homes

- Gympie dealerships count cost as storm pummels 2000 cars

- 600 claims lodged with one insurer as Gympie's costs mount

"Council is still assessing the impact of the storm on public infrastructure, community and businesses across the region,” a council statement said.

"At this stage, public infrastructure has not exceeded the threshold (or) criteria (of) $239,000 to claim assistance available through a declaration.”

Council gave no indication on exactly when the disaster status would be declared or ruled out.

The Woolooga bushfire, which destroyed more than 10,000ha of land late last month, was not officially recognised as a disaster.

Mayor Mick Curran said he understood the fires had not been large enough to meet the "Cyclone Debbie” scale of disaster relief requirements, and the damage to council infrastructure was not sufficient to trigger automatic action from the state and federal governments under the National Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.

A spokesman for Wide Bay MP Llew O'Brien said varying levels of federal support would apply, in co-operation with the state government, according to the extent of the damage.

Gympie Times


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