Lismore on alert for major floods

LISMORE residents have been warned to brace for a major flood with the Wilsons River expected to rise to 9.7m by noon today and heavy rain predicted to extend into tomorrow.

State Emergency Service volunteers yesterday door- knocked residents in low-lying parts of Lismore, warning them of the danger of flood as strong winds and rain wreaked havoc across the region.

The coast bore the brunt of the storm yesterday.

  • On the Coast Road near Flat Rock, a car was damaged when it crashed into a tree that had just been blown onto the road.
  • Emergency services volunteers staged a dramatic rescue of a woman and her sick seven-month-old baby, leading them on foot across a flooded causeway to get the baby to doctors.
  • Residents at Brunswick Heads and South Golden Beach were evacuated after concerns rose about flash flooding.

Further inland:

  • Collapsed powerlines closed the Lismore-Bangalow Road near Bexhill.
  • SES volunteers rescued two men at Terania Street, Lismore, after their car was swept away by floodwaters.
  • Vehicles were abandoned after stalling in rising water at Uralba Street, Lismore.

All up, by 7pm last night SES volunteers had rescued 13 people across the region and had fielded more than 500 calls for help - about a quarter the total south-east Queensland volunteers have received.

Strong winds last night forced the closure of streets around the region as trees fell across them.

A flood warning remained in place for Lismore, where the Wilsons River was expected to reach 9.7 metres by noon today, just short of the levee.

SES Richmond/Tweed regional controller Scott Hanckel said parts of Lismore would flood if those predictions held.

“If those predictions are accurate then there will be some impact on North Lismore,” he said.

“But we only need a couple of hours of intense rainfall and it's a completely different ball game.”

SES volunteers were door- knocking in the Brunswick River catchment - the area of primary concern.

During a visit to the SES Richmond/Tweed regional headquarters yesterday, NSW Emergency Services Minister Steve Whan said another 100-200 mm of rain could fall in the next 24 hours.

SES Richmond/Tweed Regional Controller, Scott Hanckel said people should remain vigilant.

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Check out the destruction across the Tweed area thanks to the Sunshine Coast Daily


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