Friday, 8 July 2011

Storm maps and digital TV in your letterbox today

In time for the next cyclone season and all those dooms-dayers, the Cairns Regional Council and the State Government have delivered a Storm Tide Evacuation Guide to every letterbox along the coastline.

Those that followed the appalling performance of the Council's website as Cyclone Yasi approached the coast in February, will recall how poorly prepared the Council's website was when a zillion residents tried to access the flood maps online. Most of the files were substantial and not optimised for viewing, especially when there was a great interest in what streets could have been affected by a tidal surge.

The printed version in booklet form, is still not that user-friendly, in that it's nearly impossible to identify streets. Never-the-less, this is an attempt to placate those that say the authorities were not organised in time, and this has the hallmarks of saying "wee ticked this one off" as a Council and State election loom in a few months time.

Also in your letterbox today, is some propaganda about switching to the digital TV, which will go live across most of regional Queensland on 6th December. If you haven't grabbed a set-top by now, that costs around $40 for a basic unit, then you're missing out on a load or new channels and audio stations. All new TVs have a built in digital tuner, so there's no need for an extra box.

It's likely that you won't need to upgrade your television antenna, but it must be capable of receiving bands 4 and 5. There is also a Household Assistance Scheme to purchase a new digital box, and CentreLink can help with this.

Speewah, west of Kuranda, will switch across ahead of others on Wednesday 20th July. They will have to upgrade with a set-top box or digital TV otherwise they will lose all free-to-air TV.

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