Magnetic Island North Queensland
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March 21st 2010
All's well on Magnetic Island

It was a good night for sleeping on Magnetic Island For our many off-shore readers Magnetic Times is happy to report that Tropical Cyclone Ului, which crossed the coast last night near Proserpine, has completely missed Magnetic Island and, at least for your editor, a good night's sleep was had.

We do of course hope our friends in the cyclone-affected Whitsunday/Mackay region the very best - particularly with the threat of flooding in the area.

As a measure of the concern that, for us, has now disappeared an email from a regular reader, Martin Gibson of Nelly Bay reads.

"Awoke this morning to get a telephone call from my sister in Essex asking if we were still alive after being hit by THE cyclone? Then, upon checking my emails received this from my sister in Auckland.

According to our news reports Mackay to Townsville have been declared disaster areas.

"Where does this crap come from?" Martin asks, adding, "Don't know about you but we have just had the best three days in all summer- nice and cool." and, "Just to put your mind at rest I have declared the cyclone season FINISHED. We have packed away all our cyclone shutters etc."

Upon further investigation it looks like the "D D" (disaster declaration) words came from our Emergency Services Minister Neil Roberts, whom ABC news yesterday reported, had said it was a necessary precaution. ABC noted, "The pre-emptive disaster declaration, which allows for mandatory evacuations, applies the Townsville, Burdekin, Whitsunday, Charters Towers, Mackay, Isaac, Rockhampton and Central Highlands local government areas." For the full story (click here).

To add your comment,
or read those of others, see below

All's well on Magnetic Island
Jennifer McLennan
March 20th 2010
As usual in our household we have our plan of operation if a cyclone strikes BUT have been annoyed with the over the top hype. Every year we experience two or three cyclone watches as they hover up and down the coast. It is what we get our rainy season from. The journos have over done it this year and I think it could be a case of "crying wolf" immuning the public from a real potential danger in the future. What a fuss. Cyclones are a part of living in the tropics.
March 20th 2010
While appreciating that Ministers and emergency agencies must make precautionary statements and prepare wide ranging action plans with so many “laid-back” residents living along the coast, would it not be possible for the same agencies to ensure that media releases are equally widely distributed after the event indicating who is affected and who not.
Hardest hit are our tourism operators (in this part of the world small businesses, and backbone of the Island economy) who will be faced with visitors wishing to cancel as they heard that great swathes of Queensland have been “wiped-out” or what other colourful language the mass media choose to use.
Keith Chambers
March 21st 2010
Keep up the great work mate. I followed your articles whilst in Afghanistan and they were very much appreciated.
Keith Chambers
March 21st 2010
From the media reports, I had visions of Maggie's residents evacuated forcibly. Couldn't picture you all squeezed into the Forts, though!Pleased all is well with the Island and residents.

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