The fight for compensation for more than 6800 Queenslanders whose homes were flooded in the catastrophic 2011 floods is almost over.
The fight for compensation for more than 6800 Queenslanders whose homes were flooded in the catastrophic 2011 floods is almost over. AP Photo

2011 Queensland floods class action judgment delivery due

THE 2011 FLOODS JUDGMENT:

What is happening on Friday? NSW Supreme Court Justice Robert Beech-Jones will hand down his decision at 10am AEDT

How long has the case taken? The trial of this proceeding started in the NSW Supreme Court on December 4, 2017. The case was first filed in on July 8, 2014. Justice Robert Beech-Jones retired in March 2019 to consider the evidence presented during the trial.

Why has it been heard in a NSW court, not Queensland? At the time the case was filed the Queensland Supreme Court did not have the provision for class actions.

What is the class action about?  Maurice Blackburn filed a class action alleging negligent operation of the Wivenhoe and Somerset dams in the lead up to and during the 2011 flood. It is alleged this significantly contributed to the extent and the level of flooding downstream.

Who is the class action against?  Seqwater, Sunwater and the State of Queensland as the operators of Wivenhoe and Somerset Dams, who have vigorously defended their actions.

How were the dam operators allegedly negligent? The action alleges operators failed to use rainfall forecasts in making decisions about operating strategies and to preserve a reasonable amount of the dams' storage capacity to protect homes from flooding.

How does the class action work? Class actions are generally brought by multiple people against the same defendant, where each person's claim arises out of the same or related circumstances.

What sort of damages can be awarded?  The class action is seeking damages for economic loss. The amount could vary from person to person depending upon their individual circumstances.

Who is part of the class action? The class action is brought on behalf of more than 6800 people living downstream of Wivenhoe Dam who suffered loss or damage in the flooding.


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