A CYCLONE AND A COMMUNITY
This case-study is a bit of a roller coaster ride. It’s set in the Shire of Livingstone, which stretches midway along the Queensland Coast from Rockhampton in the south to Wild Duck Island to the north – 12,000 square kilometres. The team that manages the Shire’s public open spaces is necessarily large – thirty members – and it’s broken down into the six sections co-ordinated by Matthew Kerr. “I’m proud of my team: they’re all about making a difference to the community.” This may seem like an obvious thing to say, but he’s watched them in action, not only day to day, handling the ordinary, but also on those extraordinary days which followed Friday, February 20th 2015.
On that Friday, Marcia, a severe category 5 cyclone, hit the Livingstone Shire area at peak force. Electricity was taken out, roofs blown off, walls torn down, beachfronts washed away, and trees pulled from the ground and dropped.