Current Incidents and Warnings

Thorpdale Fire - Community Update 4

28 April 2017

This information is being provided to community members of Thorpdale. It aims to help address concerns that may be present following the fire at Traveller’s Rest Hotel.

Site Update

A thirty day Emergency Order is still in effect for the clean-up of the Travellers Rest Hotel. The insurance company is currently managing a tendering process to select an asbestos contractor to carry out the site clean-up in accordance with the Emergency Order.

Information has been received from the insurance company indicating that there has been significant variation of cost and scope of works between the tendering companies. Assessing the contractor’s variation is delaying the commencement of the clean-up.

Once the contractor has been accepted they will be required to send the work management plan to the Municipal Building Surveyor. On verification of this plan works will commence.

VicRoads have established a temporary 40km per hour restriction through the township on the Mirboo North – Trafalgar Road.  This will be in force for the duration of works at the site.

Security contractors are monitoring the site during the evening to ensure the items within the hotel are protected.

Community Recovery Committee

A Community Recovery Committee was held on Wednesday 26 April 2017.

The following people attended the meeting;

  • Community Members - Natasha Hammond, Geoff Johnston, Phillip Foote, Chris Hill and Mandy Durkin.
  • Council officers - Tony Pinelli
  • Red Cross - Sheryl Hastings and Sheryl English.
  • VCC Emergency Ministry - Sue Jacka and Mark Kelly.

The committee reviewed outcomes and actions from the previous meeting and discussed medium to longer term recovery needs of the community.

Bistro and Staff

Contact has been made with all bistro and bar staff and a range of support services and options have been offered/provided.

Further discussion regarding the temporary relocating of the bistro occurred at the recent community recovery meeting.  A number of options have been identified by the committee. One of the options being considered is the relocation to the Bowling club.  This option is being explored locally.

Other recovery initiatives included holding a one off community support event with CFA and the Football & Netball Club later in the year.  More planning needs to be done before confirming this event will take place.

In the interim, people are reminded that they are welcome to congregate at the Thorpdale Football & Netball Club, on Tuesday evenings and Saturday home games when the bar is open, and on Thursdays evenings the bar is open and light meals are available.

Social Events

A number of social events are planned over the year and details of these events are located on the Thorpdale Football & Netball Club Facebook page.

Ongoing Support for Communities and Families

Following an emergency, it is important to consider that emotional reactions may be delayed and that different people respond to trauma in different ways.

It is essential that you look after yourself, your family, and the people around you. It may be people who are geographically distant from the site, or who seemingly have suffered little impact from the emergency situation who require the most support.

If you can think of anyone who may require additional support following the emergency, please refer them to:

  • LifeLine – phone 13 11 14. This is a 24-hour telephone service that offers confidential support and advice to help you deal with stress and personal challenges.
  • Red Cross – phone Sheryl Hastings on 0439 742 609, they are able to provide psychosocial support services. They also have a host of useful emergency management resources that can help which can be found on their website at www.redcross.org.au/emergency-resources.aspx
  • Victorian Council of Churches Emergency Ministry – phone Mark Kelly on 0427 748 646.  They are able to provide psychosocial support through community outreach and direct visits.

Alternatively, contact Council, and an Officer will connect you with relevant services.

For further enquiries, contact:

Sally Schimleck
Municipal Recovery Manager
Phone: 03 5624 2549 
Email:Sally.Schimleck@bawbawshire.vic.gov.au 


Thorpdale Fire - Community Update 3
12 April 2017

This information is being provided to community members of Thorpdale. It aims to help address concerns that may be present following the fire at Traveller’s Rest Hotel.

Site Update

Mairin Consulting, who are carrying out the air testing at the site, have granted permission for Council to publicise the site certificate and asbestos related information, now accessible as an attachment in the 'Related Information' section at the bottom of this page.

Once the asbestos contractor sends through the work management plan to Council, the Municipal Building Surveyor will check it to ensure it meets the Emergency Order requirements.  The building does have a heritage overlay, and its integrity and original features will be maintained as much as possible during the clean-up.

VicRoads have conducted a speed and traffic assessment of the Mirboo North – Trafalgar Road.  They have agreed to implement a temporary 40km per hour restriction through the township for the duration of works at the site.

Security contractors and Victoria Police are monitoring the site during the day and evening to ensure the items within the hotel are protected.

Community Recovery Committee

A Community Recovery Committee is scheduled for Thursday 20 April,10.00am at the Thorpdale Hall.

The members are:

  • Community Members - Natasha Hammond, Kristy Guy, Geoff Johnston, Phillip Foote, Chris Hill and Mandy Durkin.
  • Council officers - Tony Pinelli, Sally Schimleck, Dominique Foenander, Aaron Campbell and Tahseen Qadeer.
  • Red Cross - Sheryl Hastings and Diane Moyes.
  • VCC Emergency Ministry - Sue Jacka and Mark Kelly.

The next meeting of the committee will begin to address medium to longer term recovery needs of the community and provide further updates regarding the site.

Bistro and Staff

Discussions with affected employees of the pub and bistro are continuing. A range of support services and options have been offered.

Relocating the bistro to a temporary location (like the Thorpdale hall) may be a possibility. Discussions are underway with the bistro owner and business support service providers to see if this is possible.

Additionally, discussions have been had with surrounding townships to determine if employment for bar and wait staff could be offered at surrounding venues.

In the interim, people are reminded that they are welcome to congregate at the Thorpdale Football Club, on Tuesday evenings and Saturday home games when the bar is open, and on Thursdays evenings the bar is open and light meals are available. 

Preparations for Funeral Service

A traffic management plan has been developed and approved for the closure of Johnstone Street from 9.00am until 4.00pm. Arrangements have been made to have traffic controllers on the southern side of Johnstone Street (Morwell – Thorpdale Road). They will allow catering staff, the funeral procession, and disability access to the hall.

A variable messaging sign has been placed at the corner of Morwell Thorpdale Road and Mirboo North Trafalgar Road to advise motorists of the road closure.

VicPol have been advised that the funeral will take place on Wednesday, and they will have a presence around the area on the day.

Council has arranged for a number of chairs to be provided for the funeral to ensure that the high volume of attendees expected will have access to seating.

Representatives from Victorian Council of Churches Emergency Ministry have volunteered to attend the funeral service to offer support.

Ongoing Support for Communities and Families

Following an emergency, it is important to consider that emotional reactions may be delayed and that different people respond to trauma in different ways.

It is essential that you look after yourself, your family, and the people around you. It may be people who are geographically distant from the site, or who seemingly have suffered little impact from the emergency situation who require the most support.

If you can think of anyone who may require additional support following the emergency, please refer them to:

  • LifeLine – phone 13 11 14. This is a 24-hour telephone service that offers confidential support and advice to help you deal with stress and personal challenges.
  • Beyondblue – phone 1300 224 636 - An information line that offers expert information on depression, how to recognise the signs of depression, how to get help, how to help someone else and how to stay well.
  • Red Cross – phone Sheryl Hastings on 0439 742 609, they are able to provide psychosocial support services. They also have a host of useful emergency management resources that can help which can be found on their website at www.redcross.org.au/emergency-resources.aspx
  • Victorian Council of Churches Emergency Ministry – phone Mark Kelly on 0427 748 646.  They are able to provide psychosocial support through community outreach and direct visits.

For further enquiries, contact:

Sally Schimleck
Municipal Recovery Manager
Phone: 03 5624 2549 

Email:Sally.Schimleck@bawbawshire.vic.gov.au


Thorpdale Fire - Community Update 2
6 April 2017

This information is being provided to community members of Thorpdale. It aims to help address concerns that may be present following the fire at Traveller’s Rest Hotel.

Asbestos - Risk of Exposure

The Thorpdale Hotel fire has resulted in a safety risk from the structure of the building and asbestos on site and extension outside the property boundary.  The building has been secured and security fencing erected to provide exclusion from the building and possible asbestos exposure area.  

The site has been comprehensively monitored for asbestos dust and particles. Results of the air monitoring have indicated there is zero asbestos contamination outside the perimeter, therefore posing no risk to people, livestock or produce outside of the security perimeter.

An Emergency Order has been issued by the Municipal Building Surveyor to the Executor of the property who will engage a licensed asbestos removalist to perform the clean-up work. Air monitoring will continue to ensure asbestos contaminates are managed carefully.

Before debris removal occurs an encapsulating agent will be sprayed in the building and the surrounding area to prepare the asbestos for removal.

The area within the security fence will be controlled by the licensed asbestos removalist and should not be entered by any person without the appropriate approvals and personal protective clothing.

Asbestos fibres in ash and debris or cement sheeting do not pose a health risk to community, visitors to Thorpdale, livestock, or produce, unless the fibres are disturbed and then inhaled. 

What will happen to the pub?

A building assessment has been carried out and Emergency Order issued.  The Emergency order restricts the amount of demolition to ensure the structural integrity of the building is maintained. Once the building is made safe, and asbestos is removed, the municipal Building Surveyor will conduct a full structural assessment. The building is heritage listed, which means there are control measures in place as to how the building can be repaired. 

Security of Site

Security contractors and Victoria Police are monitoring the site 24 hours a day. 

Community Recovery Meeting

A meeting was held today between community representatives, Council officers, and recovery support staff to identify and discuss immediate community impacts. Some recommendations and actions to address the immediate concerns have been recorded and are underway.

This group is known as the Community Recovery Committee. The members are:

  • Community Members - Natasha Hammond, Kristy Guy, Geoff Johnston, Phillip Foote, Chris Hill and Mandy Durkin
  • Council officers - Tony Pinelli, Sally Schimleck, Dominique Foenander, Elizabeth Willems, and Tahseen Qadeer
  • Red Cross - Sheryl Hastings and Diane Moyes,
  • VCC Emergency Ministry - Sue Jacka and Mark Kelly 

Bistro and Staff

Supporting the ongoing social connections and employment of the hotel workers was identified as a significant issue. Discussions are underway to explore alternative locations to run a temporary bistro service.

People are reminded that the Thorpdale Football Club is open for business;

  • Tuesday night: Bar is open
  • Thursday night: Light meals/Bar open
  • Saturday night: Bar open from 1.00pm to late at night (every fortnight on a home game Mid-Gippsland League draw).

Preparations for Funeral Service

Community members requested that Council undertake street maintenance in preparation for guests at the funeral. There will be Council clean-up crews on local roads to do this work over the next few days. 

Taking Care of Yourself and Others

People from Victorian Council of Churches Emergency Ministry and Red Cross support services have been visiting Thorpdale and will continue to be in and around the town during the day. They will be attending the football on Saturday at the Thorpdale Recreation Reserve. These people are happy to chat with anyone about anything.

 VCC Emergency Ministry people can be identified by their dark blue shirt.

Red Cross people can be identified by their red shirt.

Emotional Assistance

In families, each person reacts in their own way after an emergency. Emotional states can change from day to day. Understanding each other and some of the common reactions to look out for can help your family. For more information, visit the The Better Health Channel trauma and families page.

If at any time you feel you need support, there are people to talk to at these numbers:

  • LifeLine – Phone 13 11 14 - A 24-hour telephone service that offers confidential support and advice to help you deal with stress and personal challenges.
  • Beyondblue information line – phone 1300 224 636 - An information line that offers expert information on depression; how to recognise the signs of depression, how to get help, how to help someone else and how to stay well.

For further enquiries, contact:

Sally Schimleck
Municipal Recovery Manager
Phone: 03 5624 2549 
Email:Sally.Schimleck@bawbawshire.vic.gov.au

 


Thorpdale Fire - Community Update 1
4 April 2017

This information is being provided to community members of Thorpdale. It aims to help address concerns that may be present following the fire at Traveller’s Rest Hotel.

Asbestos Removal - Traveller’s Rest Hotel

Asbestos has been found at the site and the grounds. There will be a fence erected at the perimeter of the affected area. People are advised of stay out the exclusion area to avoid exposure to asbestos dust and particles. This fence will stay in place until the emergency order requirements are completed. For further information download the After a Fire: Asbestos Hazards Flyer (Print Version) from the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services.

Floral Tributes

We are aware that people may wish to leave a tribute at the site. For you own safety, please do not enter exclusion zone. Tributes may be placed outside this zone.

Support for Individuals and the Community

Support is available to to individuals and the community in many ways, and at different times. Lifeline provides 24 hour support on the phone or over the internet and is available to everyone.

Call 13 11 14 for support.

Working with Thorpdale Community

Representatives of the community will be meeting with Council and recovery service providers in the next few days to understand the impact on the community and its needs into the future.

For further enquiries, contact:

Sally Schimleck
Municipal Recovery Manager
Phone: 03 5624 2549
Email:Sally.Schimleck@bawbawshire.vic.gov.au