During flood events North East CMA is a key support agency to the Victorian State Emergency Service. A key support agency has specific skills and resources to support response for a particular type of emergency. For the CMA these skills and knowledge relate to riverine flooding. For further information on the CMA’s role during flood emergencies click here.
Following above average rainfall over the winter and spring, with numerous moderate to major flood events across North East Victoria. North East CMA staff headed out into the community for a series of Catchment Conversations.
Catchment Conversations were held at 10 locations across North East Victoria and were attended by over 60 landholders and community members. Representatives from Local Councils, Victoria State Emergency Service, Parks Victoria, Agriculture Victoria, Victoria Police, Goulburn-Murray Water, Forest Fire Management Victoria and NSW Department of Primary Industries were also in attendance at many of the conversations.
At these Catchment Conversations, landholders and other community members discussed how recent flooding impacted on infrastructure; identify what information or assistance was require post flood, how this flood compared with flooding in previous years and if there were any other issues to investigate.
At each Catchment Conversation North East CMA staff were on hand to record issues raised by the community. These issues varied from location to location, however one consistent observation was that this flood event behaved differently from previous flood events. Whilst flood extent can be readily predicted, each flood event is unique, and it is usual to see different responses whether due to the duration and intensity of rain fall, soil conditions prior to the event or the duration of the flood.
Key issues and points of interest raised, by the community, at specific locations included:
- Eskdale residents alerted CMA staff to particular issues along the Little Snowy and Nariel Creeks.
- Whorouly residents advised that they observed the gauges did not reach major flood level until after floodplains were inundated.
- Milawa/Markwood residents observed significant damage to banks along the Ovens River and levees on the floodplain.
- Mount Beauty attendees were generally happy as there was limited flood damage so their feedback was that they felt the flood event was ‘good for the environment’.
- Omeo residents chose to discuss future coordination of flood response.
- Overall landholders and the community want to see more investment in preparing for flood events.
North East CMA are extremely grateful to all who attended the Catchment Conversation or contacted the CMA directly to report issues. Staff are currently visiting and assessing sites of all reported issues. A summary for each Catchment Conversation is in the process of being developed and these will be made available to attendees as soon as they are completed.
If you were unable to attend the recent Catchment Conversation and would like to advise us of a waterway issue, please phone 1300 216 513.