What you need to know about the aluminium shutters that have been found in the Brisbane River
The Brisbane River’s iconic aluminium shuttering has been found, with experts saying it could help protect the area from further flooding.
Key points:The shutters were discovered by a boat surveyor who was surveying the river last weekThe shuttering could help to protect Brisbane from further floods, the ABC understandsOne of the shutters was found on the south bank of the Brisbane, and one of the largest was found to be over 1m wideThe Queensland Government is asking the public for help identifying the other shuttersThe discovery of the first set of aluminium shutter caps in the river was made last week by a surveyor from the boat survey company, Gannett Aquatic, who was fishing off the west coast of Queensland.
“We were just fishing off Cairns and we found a lot of shutters in the water and I said, ‘You can see the shuttering is just like a sheet of metal, so I’m guessing they’ve been around for a long time,'” he said.
“I looked at the back of the boat and I was thinking, ‘Wow, this is really nice’.”
Gannett has also identified the second set of shutter plates, which are just 1.5m across and 1m deep, but experts are still trying to piece together what they are made of.
“They are very well made, they have a very solid metal base,” Dr Ian Smith, a professor of marine biology at the University of Queensland’s Faculty of Life Sciences, said.”[They] are probably used for anchoring vessels or for anchorage of boats or whatever else that they do in the wild.”
The most likely reason for this is they are part of the sedimentary layers that have accumulated on the river bottom, which have formed a layer of water that is very, very resilient and we’re trying to figure out how that happens.
“Mr Smith said he could not speculate on what purpose the shutter was designed to serve, but he said it was “not likely to be used for anything”.”
If they were used to shelter boats, then that would be an entirely different thing,” he said, adding that he was “confident” that the second pair of shuttles were not for anchouring vessels.
Dr Smith said the presence of the two shuttels would not be “a huge surprise” if the two sets of shutts were used for shelter purposes, but if they were for fishing, they would likely be found to have been used for some other purpose.”
You don’t really need to be fishing on these shuttters for them to be useful, but it would make sense for them in a different context,” he told the ABC.”
But in terms of their function, it would not surprise me if they’re used for fishing.
“The Queensland Premier said it would be “absolutely irresponsible” to keep the shuttings off the river, and he urged anyone with information to contact the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection.
Topics:aquatic-biology,environment,brisbane-4000,brisbanetimes-2440,brisborough-4000Contact Matthew O’BrienMore stories from Queensland