The Australian Government is protecting communities through the STAND program by investing in improved connectivity for emergency services depots and evacuation centres, improved telecommunications resilience under the Mobile Network Hardening Program (MNHP), and portable communications facilities across the country.
All of these measures will help to save lives and reduce the impact of natural disasters on the community.
The satellite services being deployed at emergency service depots and community evacuation centres across the country will provide backup and alternative communications facilities.
These projects will help ensure communities such as Bendigo can continue to access emergency information and remain connected to friends and family through NBN’s Sky Muster satellite service during times of disaster when land-based networks are damaged or offline.
STAND-funded assets have proven to be effective in supporting local communities during natural disasters, including the 2022 East Coast Floods in New South Wales and Queensland, the December 2021 and January 2022 Western Australia bushfires, Cyclone Seroja, the June 2021 Victorian and Ingham, Queensland floods.
The Australian Government is also encouraging people to be prepared for natural disasters through a public communications program, including by having a portable radio in emergency kits and notifying family members of travel plans.
Quotes attributable to the Minister for Communications, the Hon Michelle Rowland MP:
“The Albanese Government is committed to delivering the investments and infrastructure which local communities need to be better prepared for natural disasters.
“The project in Bendigo is one of 1039 delivered so far under the program, with the remaining projects to be completed by November 2022.
“While no network can ever be 100 per cent disaster-proof, these investments will go a long way towards ensuring local residents can stay connected in the most difficult times, especially to access potentially lifesaving information and advice”.
Quotes attributable to the Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters MP:
“Staying connected during a natural disaster can be the difference between life and death, whether that be receiving the latest information or contacting emergency services.
“This project is a major boost for Bendigo and will help ensure we minimise the risk of local communications network disruptions when natural disasters strike.
“I am pleased the Albanese Government is listening to the community and making significant inroads toward more resilient communications infrastructure to keep local residents safe and informed.
For more information on the STAND program, go to www.infrastructure.gov.au/stand