Coode Island Committee Update

Planning for the Emergency Management Forum on October 6 is well advanced, according to Marg Leser of the Emergency Management sub-committee. Ms Leser told the September 23 meeting of the Coode Island Community Consultative Committee (CICCC) that the forum will be held the Uniting Church Hall, McCracken Street, Kensington from 6 pm – 8.30pm.

Managing Director of Terminals Pty Ltd Peter Reddie gave a presentation at the meeting on the Quantative Risk Assessments carried out by DNV in 1994 and 1997. In the intervening years improved safety measures and changes to the location and quantity of hazardous materials stored on the island have reduced the risk of a fatality.

Mr Reddie said: “As we plan for the redevelopment at the Terminals facility, we will be aiming to meet WorkCover’s objective of containing the one in one hundred thousand risk factor within the plant boundary”. Faye Simpson told the Committee that risk assessments are based on predicted deaths and take no account of potential sickensses resulting from an accident. The Committee is now seeking advice from WorkCover on how the risk of health impairment to the public due to chemicals stored at Coode Island, can be quantified and assessed.

Renae Krousouratis of the Victorian WorkCover Authority presented a report of her six-monthly audit of dangerous goods storage and handling at the facility. “Terminals are doing lots of self auditing”, she said. Ms Krousouratis issued directions concerning signage (some signs faded and in need of updating); the 50-year flood level (determine actual level and compliance) the security of the re-pack area, maintenance records, housekeeping, tank integrity and the on-going problems of rabbits. The directions must be complied with by 30 September 1999. An improvement notice on Plant Regulations was issued with a November 2 deadline for completion.

The Committee also discussed investigations into a website for the CICCC and resolved to proceed with the initiative. Watch this space for details on the address.

The Commitee asked chairman Robin Saunders to write to WorkCover seeking advice on procedures to manage hazardous chemicals imported through the Coode Island P&O Ports Container Terminal. The next committee meeting will be held on Thursday 21 October 1999 at the Maribyrnong Town Hall , corner of Hyde and Napier Streets, Footscray starting at 6.30pm. Members of the community are welcome to attend.