Byron Shire residents can keep track with the situation in the shire using council’s new Emergency Dashboard.
Byron Shire residents can keep track with the situation in the shire using council’s new Emergency Dashboard.

‘Baptism of fire’ for Byron’s online emergency dashboard

THE Byron Shire’s brand new emergency dashboard had a ‘baptism of fire’ over the weekend, according to mayor Simon Richardson.

“It’s been an amazing baptism of fire for the dashboard, but it’s really holding up well and it’s really showing its benefits for locals who can access it,” he said.

Unveiled only last week, the dashboard is a dedicated website by council where Byron Shire can bookmark on their phones or computers, with access to emergency information when a flood or fire arises.

The dashboard links to other websites or social media feeds for the most up-to-date information available, Mr Richardson said.

“Besides info from the Bureau of Meteorology, the dashboard has all the roads information as far as what roads are open or not,” he said.

“It also provides information such as the height of the rivers across the Northern Rivers, plus links and numbers to get in touch with all emergency organisations.”

The development of the emergency dashboard was possible through a $250,000 grant from the NSW Government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund.

Byron Shire Council's emergency dashboard.
Byron Shire Council's emergency dashboard.

The online tool also links to a wide range of other information and resources including council’s new Climate Wise website, which is designed to get the community to prepare early for a range of different emergencies such a flood, fire or severe storms.

The mayor said Byron Shire Council was prepared to help residents in the coming days.

“River levels, coastal weather, road closures and powerlines are the main issues people are interested in,” he said.

“We know that potholes form after severe rain, because water gets under the road surface and washes it out from underneath, and that’s already starting to occur.

“Some of our bridge work has been severely damaged in Main Arm, and we are yet to find out the severity of that.

“Road erosion and infrastructure loss across the coast seem to be the key in certain weak spots.”

Byron Shire Council was unable to offer data on how many visits the website received during the weekend.

A spokeswoman said council would be able to provide a report on site visits as part of their post-event reporting.

Click here to see the Byron Shire Emergency Dashboard is at emergency.byron.nsw.gov.au.



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