COFFS Harbour city councillors will consider three quotations for designing and costing a flood warning system for the central area of the city at their meeting tonight.

The system is to provide the maximum amount of warning to the SES, council, key stakeholders, other emergency agencies and the public of a possible flood event.

It will cover only Coffs Creek and the Boambee-Newports Creek catchments.

Council’s preference is for a robust and flexible system that is fully-automated and includes the ability to communicate automated flood alerts, warnings and flood predictions.

The council has received proposals from DHI; Molino Stewart and Greenspan.

The successful consultant will be required to complete the design and costing work within 12 weeks.

Implementing the flood warning system will be subject to a separate tender process.

An early warning system was part of the nine point flood mitigation plan presented to council last year by council general manager Stephen Sawtell and was included in the $6million flood mitigation budget adopted by council.

While much of the council’s flood mitigation planning was based on the 2005 Coffs Creek Flood Plain Risk Management Strategy, the warning system was not.

The rapid onset of flooding and the limits of technology at the time saw it excluded from the 2005 document, but improvements in communication technology and personal mobile communication devices has led to the change.

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