Wellingtonians Help out in Queensland

12 January 2011

Several people from the Wellington region are among the team of New Zealand volunteers already helping out in flood-ravaged Queensland - and more are poised to go if needed, says Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.

Civil-defence volunteers from Wellington and the Hutt Valley are in the 15-strong New Zealand Civil Defence Response Team assisting with flood relief in the Condamine area.

Mayor Wade-Brown, who holds Wellington City Council's Emergency Management portfolio, says the thoughts of Wellingtonians "are clearly with the people of Queensland in this time of devastation and tragedy".

"We will obviously be guided by the Government and in particular the Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management - but we have volunteers who are ready and willing to go and help if the call for assistance goes out.

"Queensland is home to many New Zealanders and their family members - so the images we are seeing via the media have a direct impact on our lives."

"If more help is needed, we are ready to respond," says Mayor Wade-Brown. "Although Wellington City is unlikely to be severely flooded, we can still learn what we can from evacuation, communication and restoration work so our own communities can be better prepared for events here."

Wellington City Council's Emergency Preparedness Manager, Fred Mecoy, says a large number of well-trained volunteers can be called on to cross the Tasman if needed.