NSW SES volunteers have begun preparations for major flooding and severe weather conditions on the NSW North Coast following warnings for the Bureau of Meteorology.
The Bureau of Meteorology has issued warnings for severe weather and subsequent Moderate to Major Flooding in the Northern Rivers region and northern parts of the Northern Tablelands of NSW later this week.
The Bureau has advised that heavy rain and damaging winds are expected to develop over the region during today, and will continue through until the end of week.
They warn that flash flooding associated with this rain and wind gusts in excess of 90km/h are likely. Average wind speeds are expected to be in excess of 65km/h.
A Flood Watch has also been issued by the Bureau and covers the Tweed, Brunswick, Richmond and Wilsons rivers. These catchments could experience heavy falls between 150mm–300mm over the next three days, with some areas experiencing much heavier localised rain falls.
The SES says that this rainfall may cause local and main river moderate to major flooding in the following catchments: Tweed Valley, Brunswick Valley, Richmond Valley and the Wilsons Valley.
The State Emergency Service advises that people living or working along rivers and streams in these areas must monitor latest weather forecasts and warnings and be ready to move to higher ground should flooding develop.
The SES further advises that people camping, caravanning and engaging in activities near rivers and streams should listen to the radio for updates and advices. They should camp well away from watercourses and streams and be particularly aware that roads leading away from unestablished camp sites could be affected by floodwater well before camping areas are.
Farmers and other landholders should keep a watch on their streams and be prepared to move pumps, equipment and livestock to higher ground.
People should check to ensure that their roof gutters and down-pipes are clear to help prevent flooding into their roof spaces and they should also check that stormwater drains in and around their property are clear to assist run-off.
The placement of sandbags and other flood mitigation options might assist if they have experienced flooding in the past.
“Most importantly, people should always understand the potential life-threatening nature of floodwaters as they can be very powerful, run fast and deep and contain hidden debris,” the SES said.
The SES strongly advises that people should not drive, ride or walk through floodwater, as entering floodwater has proven to be the greatest killer in floods.
For emergency help in floods and storms, call the SES on 132 500.
For life-threatening situations, call 000 immediately.