Recent reports suggest that fly-in fly-out (FIFO) services between the Proserpine / Whitsunday Coast Airport and some Central Queensland mines could well be established in the next three to six months now that data from the FIFO survey by Whitsunday Regional Council and consultants AVMIN is in.
More than 300 people responded to the online survey which was live for one month. Participants worked in areas such as Moranbah, Collinsville, Clermont, Glenden, Emerald, Bowen, and even as far away as Gove.
Whitsunday Coast Airport business development manager Scott Waters said all parties were very pleased with the survey results.
Meanwhile, the Rockhampton Morning Bulletin Newspaper has recently reported that Rockhampton Regional Council Mayor Margaret Strelow has her sights firmly set on fly-in fly-out mining operations to the west of Rockhampton. However, Cr Strelow concedes the council has not yet done enough to stay ahead of the game.
With a new mine at Alpha rumoured to be staffed predominately from a fly-in fly-out (FIFO) workforce, questions have been raised over Rockhampton's ability to take advantage of this mining boom. Cr Strelow said although Rockhampton had fallen behind in promoting FIFO support services she was confident her return to office would see the issue placed back on the agenda.
She said it was regrettable Rockhampton had not better promoted FIFO-based services in the past but was confident there was still time to get involved with Central Queensland mine support.
The CEO of Capricorn Enterprise said the council's move to better promote FIFO was positive but local government needed to take more action to bring Rockhampton up to speed. She said council, who administers the airport, needed to work with the mines and commercial airline companies to better develop FIFO flight infrastructure.
With many other Central Queensland towns already surging ahead on the back of FIFO mining operations, Cr Strelow said Rockhampton needed to promote itself as the premier place to live for regional mine workers.
Cr Strelow said providing an attractive environment for mining families was not only about providing the air transport service, but also family support facilities like schools and hospitals.