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Gippsland Floods

Published 12/06/2012

The Victoria State Emergency Service (SES) received more than 1,500 requests for assistance last week after heavy rain fell over Gippsland.

As much as 200mm of rain fell around the Gippsland ranges and 100-150mm fell over a widespread area, with some areas receiving one or two times their monthly rainfall in a single day.

The downpour inflicted flash flooding and brought damaging winds to metropolitan Melbourne, south-west Victoria and Gippsland, with Traralgon, Bairnsdale, Bruthen, Emerald and Lilydale bearing the immediate brunt of the weather.

A number of homes in Traralgon were flooded and many communities in East Gippsland were isolated or left without power for over 48 hours.

Once the rain and winds had subsided, communities in the Gippsland Lakes area braced for the impact of the floodwater that was making its way towards the ocean.

Thankfully, the water peaked at a lower level than expected and no injuries were reported throughout the event, though several people were rescued from life-threatening situations after entering floodwater- including children.

In total, the SES received 1577 requests for assistance, and responded to 33 rescue events involving people who were trapped or stranded by floodwater.

Driving in floodwater is the top killer of adults during flooding.

Never drive through floodwater – you don’t know what you’re getting into.