Hockey Australia wishes to advise that at present, the Australian Indoor Hockey Festival in Wollongong beginning on 4 January will go ahead as scheduled.
Over the past days, Hockey Australia has been and continues to be in contact with the Rural Fire Service, Wollongong Council, Destination Wollongong and Wollongong Police in regards to monitoring and preparing for risks to the Indoor Hockey Festival and its participants.
Hockey Australia and tournament officials will also continue to monitor the air quality through the Environment Protection Authority (EPA).
Events will continue, however in line with the ever-changing conditions, Hockey Australia will provide updates as it continues to monitor all available information sources as well as contacts with relevant authorities.
Ahead of the Indoor Hockey Festival, below is some advice on the proposed approach to risk and safety of participants and spectators.
Participants and anyone intending on attending the festival is encouraged to monitor the risks and emergencies themselves.
Respect any road closures, advice from Police/RFS/SES or emergency broadcasts.
Monitor the Risk(s) and Emergencies
Hockey Australia recommends monitoring the below for information on risks and emergencies in NSW, as it may relate to the Indoor Festival of Hockey;
Rural Fire Service – Fires Near Me
Information available at https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/fires-near-me
It is recommended to download this from Apple Store or Google Play. You can set an alert or ‘watch zone’ for Wollongong which will provide you with an alert on your phone for any hazards or emergencies.
For those flying into Sydney Airport and travelling to Wollongong, it is recommended to set up a secondary watch zone for halfway (i.e. Helensburgh) to ensure you are aware of anything that occurs on the road from Sydney to Wollongong.
Live Traffic NSW
Download through the Apple Store or from Google Play. This app will alert travellers of road closures. You can pre-set a trip for alerts on your preferred routes.
When in NSW tune in radios to the most relevant emergency radio station for live updates on any emergencies that may occur.
A list of these can be found at https://www.ses.nsw.gov.au/local-region-information/isr/local-radio-stations/
Note: 97.3FM for Illawarra or ABC Radio.
In relation to the event (any age group) once it is underway, in addition to Hockey Australia’s policy on heat management, Tournament Directors will monitor air quality (smoke etc from fires not in the direct area).
Information on the Air Quality can be found at https://www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/air/Pages/aqi.aspx
The Illawarra Hockey Centre has large fans which will be active inside the hall which will address heat and move air. As a general guide, Hockey Australia will adopt the recommendations on this page as relevant for ‘Other Adults’.
If the AQI (updated hourly) is Very Poor, the Tournament Director may evaluate the situation at the centre and make a call on specific matches whether they should be cancelled/postponed.
If the AQI is Hazardous, the Tournament Director should move to stop/postpone matches until the AQI is revised and re-graded.
All circumstances of match cancellation, postponement, abandonment can be found in the Tournament Regulations.
If at any stage participants or the venue is seen to be under the threat of fire, Hockey Australia will communicate directly with event officials and team managers by TEXT and EMAIL. Please ensure all contact details are updated and correct.
This advice is relevant as at 12:00pm AEDT Tuesday 31 December 2019. Further updates may be provided.
In addition, during the festival the Management of the Illawarra Hockey Centre will be collecting front door donations which will be distributed across the RFS, fire victims and drought relief.