State Member for Bega toured Narooma on Tuesday morning as Wagonga Inlet resembled something out of the Antarctic with foam floating like icebergs.
The high tide on Monday night fortunately was lower than on Sunday night but water still came over the Narooma town wharf.
“We’ve still got an emergency situation with a lot of water flowing through our coastal vallleys,” Mr Constance said. “We still have water rescues happening which is unacceptable and people are putting their own lives and that of others at risk.”
Local councils over the next 72 hours would be assessing damage and he said the State Government would be there to offer support were appropriate.
Eurobodalla Council on Tuesday announced that the section of Centenary Drive between Williamson Drive and Apex Park will be closed indefinitely. Detours are in place and drivers can still access Apex Park boatramp via Dalmeny Drive and Mill Bay boatramp from the highway, while residents of Williamson Drive can access their homes from Centenary Drive. Mill Bay boardwalk is still open.
The slip has cut off one lane and cracked parts of the road. Council will start repairs as soon as possible after the site has been assessed and the natural disaster funding options are finalised with the Department of Premier and Cabinet. Council will keep the community updated on the repair schedule.
Mr Constance was on his way down to visit the SES at Bega and thanked all the emergency service workers and volunteers for their dedication over the last three days.
Charter skipper Norm Ingersole said the rising tide was the worst he had ever seen, with water coming up to his blackboards next to his boats. He said the damage to the town wharf would need to be assessed with boards shifted and holes appearing.
The Dalmeny Kianga RFS brigade was also on standby on Monday night as their station was flooded out on Sunday requiring sand bagging.
Captain Greg Hill said the sand they used was dropped off in town and after we filled about 100 bags, they filled more and left them there for anyone in the community that needed them.
While restaurants and boat sheds along the foreshore on Forsters Bay were flooded out on Sunday night causing significant damage, the rest of the Narooma Flat was not that bad.
Flat resident Gabe Eichler who lives on Lynch Street where serious flooding occured in the past, thanked Eurobodalla Council for its stormwater mitigation steps.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Eurobodalla Shire Council for taking action that it did take in the last 12 months, in updating and servicing our storm water drainage and waterway systems throughout Narooma,” she said. “With this current monsoonal deluge of rainfall I only experienced flooding, swimming pool conditions, from the rear and front of my property, with the highest king tide on Sunday night. This was about the same levels as experienced in the 2010 downpour.
“Prior to council’s updating and servicing I and other residences on the Flat would of been under water a lot sooner. So I thank you ESC for your actions and your updated continual communications with me in this matter.”
Some residents at the back of Wagonga Inlet at Narooma reported that their power only came back on Monday evening after being out for 30 hours.
The Narooma Anglicare Disaster Recovery Team, which is comprised of community volunteers, was placed on standby on Sunday night for deployment to Eden, Bega or Merimbula in the event that evacuation centres had been established. Stand-down was given Monday night.
Down at Bermagui, Cobargo and Wallaga Lake, residents are still being advised to limit their water usage and to boil water as the Brogo system was impacted on by floodwaters.
The boardwalk at Wallaga Lake Heights at the entrance to Wallaga Lake was completely washed away out to sea, and Carol Hawken sent us some great photos of what remains including sections at Murunna Point.
Local skippers reported the waves on Monday were the biggest they had even seen with swell breaking point to point across Horseshoe Bay.
Flooding was also bad to the north around the Bodalla and Nerrigundah areas. Juia Mayo-Ramsey reported Cemetery Bridge at Bodalla was flooded where the Tuross River had busted its banks and spread all over the paddocks.
The battered coastline at Narooma and resulting foam was a big attraction with locals getting out and experiencing something they had never seen before.
On Monday evening as the sun set, a huge rainbow came out over Narooma, much to everyone’s delight.
Here the latest advice from Eurobodalla Council:
Current road closures and warnings
Eurobodalla Road, west of Cemetery Bridge including Nerrigundah Mountain Road
Centenary Drive, Narooma – Narooma-bound lane closed
Araluen Road at Kiora Bridge - alternative access via Larrys Mountain Road
Congo Road at the causeway - alternative access via Bingie Road
The River Road, Nelligen
Beach Road, Caseys Beach - expected to be reopened this afternoon
Kianga Bridge, Dalmeny Drive - only one lane open
Sunnyside Drive, Tilba
Gulph Creek, Nerrigundah - reported wash out of approach road, Council is inspecting this morning, please proceed with caution
Bridges that are closed are: Cemetery Bridge, Tyrone Bridge, Silo Bridge, Kiora Bridge and Crapps Bridge, and various low level crossings throughout the shire
Road safety after heavy rainfall
After heavy rainfall, please drive with extra caution due to changed surface conditions on many roads, especially unsealed roads. Drive to the conditions, and do not drive, ride or walk through flood waters.
Water safety message
Following the heavy rain, Eurobodalla Council is reminding residents that wet weather increases runoff in our creeks, rivers and beaches and that swimming should be avoided during rainfall and for a few days afterwards. Runoff from pastures, forest and urban catchments into swimming holes, beaches, small urban creeks and waterways can cause turbid waters and the possibility of pollutants which may affect swimmers' health. Murky waters containing debris, sediments, soil and pollutants can affect swimmers’ safety by reducing their ability to see hazards such as sandbars, logs and rocks. Environmental health warning signs will be put up around Eurobodalla where there may be potential water quality issues. Residents and visitors are asked to respect these warnings and not swim in these waterways until further notice.