Queensland energy provider Ergon Energy has been recognised in the 2019 Get Ready Queensland Resilient Australia Awards for its resilient communities project.
The awards acknowledged eight organisations for projects that have helped Queensland communities better prepare for natural disasters and emergencies.
Energy Queensland won the Business Award for its Building Resilient Queensland Communities project through the innovative work undertaken by Ergon Energy Network.
Townsville-based Area Manager, Wayne Alderman, said Ergon maximised technology and prioritised community partnerships to improve disaster response and minimise the impact of severe weather events.
“This year alone we’ve responded to record floods, multiple cyclones, severe storms and bushfires across Queensland, and technology plays a central role in our disaster response efforts,” Mr Alderman said.
“We use an advanced aircraft-based laser and image capturing system to help assess network damage and conditions, so we can dispatch restoration crews more efficiently.
“We’ve also invested in mobile generation units that connect directly into the local network and can be remotely monitored and controlled. These units can be used to temporarily supply power to the worst-affected areas or essential services while crews rebuild the network.
“Improvements to our information management systems have also delivered benefits for customers, who are looking for updates on outages and restoration times.
“Field Force Automation feeds the latest information from field crews into Ergon’s web-based Outage Finder. This allows us to publish community-wide restoration plans as early as practically possible after a severe weather event, so customers can track our restoration effort.
“We’ve used a range of technology to make our network restoration work more efficient and better support the communities we serve by reducing the impact natural disasters have on them.”
The Queensland winners were standouts in a highly competitive field, with a record 34 entries across six categories.
The winning entries will now be reviewed by the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience, with selected projects to be nominated for a National Resilient Australia Award on 31 October 2019.