Bushfires - January 2020 (Data Cubes RQ1 and RQ2)
Bushfires resulted in disruption to ABS data collection operations in some regions in New South Wales and Victoria during January 2020. A few areas in New South Wales, particularly within the ‘Capital Region’, were also unable to be surveyed in February 2020. These areas amounted to around half the sample which was unable to be surveyed in January 2020 in the state.
As with January data, the ABS confirmed that the disruption from the bushfires did not have a notable impact on key headline statistics and that no additional statistical interventions were required.
Region level data for the New South Wales regions of the ‘Capital Region' February 2020 will not be published in the February 2020 Labour Force, Australia, Detailed, Quarterly publication (cat. no. 6291.0.55.003) on 26 March.
The ABS expects to resume publishing these estimates with the release of May 2020 data (in June).
Townsville Flood 2019 - (Data Cubes EQ03, RQ1 and RQ2)
Flooding in Townsville in February 2019 resulted in a major disruption to the operation of the Labour Force Survey. Given the severity of these disruptions, which affected almost the entire region, and to ensure that this loss of sample did not affect data for Australia and Queensland, the ABS imputed sample for Townsville for February 2019. The imputation drew upon previous information that had recently been collected from people in Townsville.
The ABS re-assessed this imputation and has not revised the imputed data. However, users of the Townsville data, and totals for ‘Rest of Queensland’ data, should still exercise some extra caution when looking at yearly and quarterly movements in February 2020.
During 2018, the ABS estimated that employed people in Townsville accounted for around 1 per cent of all employed people in Australia, around 4 per cent of employed people in Queensland, and around 9 per cent of employed people in the regions in Queensland outside of Brisbane.