Bendigo Advertiser letters to the editor

I was pleased to see David Elvery's letter (3rd January) regarding use of mobile phones by pedestrians. 

However the biggest danger to all of us remains motorists who continue to text and scroll social media while driving. 

As a bike rider, it is amazing how much more you can see from the elevated vantage point close to cars - phones on seats and laps being read and typed on are so common as to be unremarkable. In fact, I was almost pleased to see a p-plater driving towards me on Sunday - reading her mobile phone that was balanced on the steering wheel at least gave her a chance to vaguely watch the road while travelling at about 80kmh - but if she got distracted - she or I could easily have been dead.  We should be considering this a major safety matter - equivalent penalties to "30kmh over the legal speed limit" might be a start.

Rob Stephenson, Strathfieldsaye

DANGEROUS: Half of people under 30 use phones when driving. Photo: KEN ROBERTSON

DANGEROUS: Half of people under 30 use phones when driving. Photo: KEN ROBERTSON

Data is sophisticated

I write regarding Gavan Conroy’s letter to the editor ‘Questions about data used for flood study’ (January 3, 2018).

The Bendigo Urban Flood Study provides sophisticated, up-to- date flood mapping data of Bendigo and is designed to help residents better prepare for future flood events. It has identified current flood risks across the urban area and as modelling is reviewed and updated, the study will be updated.

The community was engaged in the development of this plan and will be invited to be involved as it evolves. By endorsing the plan, Council also requested future climate data additions and for it to include other areas of Bendigo.

Three independent reviews of the Bendigo Urban Flood Study were undertaken, including an independent panel appointed by the Minister for Planning. All three reviews confirmed the modelling was appropriate.

Mr Conroy highlighted an issue with Flood Eye’s display of the data of smaller flood events in Bendigo, however this is not indicative of errors in the Bendigo Urban Flood Study data itself. The issues were isolated to a small amount of data within the tables in some reports. As a precaution, the North Central Catchment Management Authority has taken the affected lines out of the data tables for Bendigo in Flood Eye and is in the process of manually cross-checking them.

There is a difference between Flood Eye and the data collected as part of the Bendigo Urban Flood Study. Flood Eye is an online tool that extracts the data from the flood study and produces a map and a report for individual properties. The intent of the Flood Eye report is to ensure that individuals can have full disclosure of the flood risks associated with their property. The 1-in- 100 year data was manually checked against the Flood Eye mapping and reports. Anyone who has concerns regarding their property can make an appointment with the North Central Catchment Management Authority to go through the data.

This data is better than anything that has been produced previously and will continue to be improved on. It has been developed to a standard recognised around the world. The City has a duty to share this information with residents to assist in their decision making. It also allows the City to develop planning overlays that protect future developments and people’s homes and properties. If anyone has an insurance premium they believe is too high, the North Central Catchment Management Authority can work with you to provide you with the details you need to present to your insurance company.

Mayor Cr Margaret O’Rourke