Community fears flood risk as Mooball Creek remains blocked
POTTSVILLE residents fearing their homes could be inundated by rising creek tides are demanding Tweed Shire Council immediately unblock the entrance of Mooball Creek.
The council is continuing to monitor conditions at Mooball Creek, where the beach has grown wider than the entrance walls and the whole lower estuary is blocked by sand.
Water quality has also been impacted, forcing the council to issue a warning last Friday urging people to avoid swimming in the creek due to elevated levels of bacteria in the water.
Concerned residents had planned to take action into their own hands and dig out the sand blocking the creek mouth on Sunday but threats of being fined by the Department of Primary Industries and the council stopped them.
One Pottsville resident, who asked to remain anonymous, said he had planned on helping to dig out the sand but was warned off by DPI officers.
"It's been blocked for two weeks, the water is very high and is coming into people's yards around the canals,” he said.
"A lot of people are feeling a lot of urgency about it.
"Although it's currently not a big issue, with a big storm event the water has nowhere to go and it could rise rapidly in the middle of the night. It could flood right through town.”
The council's community and natural resources acting director Jane Lofthouse said it was important the community allowed the DPI and council officers to maintain the creek.
"If not done properly and under the right conditions, there is a real possibility opening up the creek with machinery or by hand digging could make the problem worse,” she said.
"This is because good quality water drained out of the lower estuary would be replaced by lower quality water presently sitting in the upper estuary and cane drains of Wooyung.
"This water is lower in dissolved oxygen and has a lower pH, and potentially higher bacteria levels.”