Shelter safe from chaos

Eric White at the Kingscliff TAFE where evacuees from Fingal spent the night.
Eric White at the Kingscliff TAFE where evacuees from Fingal spent the night.

KINGSCLIFF TAFE yesterday remained a shelter for people forced from their homes at the mercy of the floods, despite the easing conditions.

About 20 people showed up at the site on Wednesday night after the SES began evacuating people from homes at Fingal and Chinderah.

Department of Community Services (DoCS) workers have been at the evacuation centre to register people and help them organise emergency accommodation.

“No one actually stayed here last night but they are welcome to,” campus service officer Eric White said yesterday.

“We are still an evacuation centre and we've had people in and out.

“On and off we had about 20 people, mainly from Fingal and also a caravan park at Chinderah.

“We even had a little French poodle running around, so people are welcome to bring their animals.”

The evacuation centre is a small room with chairs, tables and a television.

Other supplies including blankets and toiletries have also been made available.

The TAFE was selected because it is on high ground and safe from flooding.

“We are equipped if people have nowhere else to go,” campus manager Fran O'Hara said.

“We've got emergency packs with toothbrushes, razors and towels.

“And the Red Cross can supply food when we start getting the numbers.”

Most TAFE classes were still running yesterday, despite schools across the region remaining closed.

“There have only been two sections cancelled for the day,” Ms O'Hara said.

“All other classes are going ahead.”

Despite most parts of the TAFE campus withstanding the cruel weather, high winds ripped a set of solar panels clear from the roof.

“We are lucky all our trees have been falling in the opposite direction to the campus,” Ms O'Hara said.

“We'll remain open unless some real disaster befalls us.”

For those needing emergency accommodation due to flooding, the TAFE is located on Cudgen Road.

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