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North East Victoria ‘like a wet sponge’: SES

Published 12/08/2013

Rain set to fall over North East Victoria this week will increase the risk of flooding as the region is already ‘saturated like a wet sponge’ according to Victoria State Emergency Service (SES).

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a Flood Watch for North East Victoria, including the Upper Murray, Mitta Mitta, Kiewa, Ovens and King catchments. A cold front brought 10mm of rain across the region today, with another 10-15mm anticipated to fall overnight to Tuesday.

Minor flooding is already occurring in the Ovens, Kiewa and King Catchments and Minor Flood Warnings are current for the Ovens, King and Kiewa rivers.

Victoria SES’ Acting North East Regional Manager Neil Payn urged Victorians to prepare for the possibility of flooding.

"Consistent rainfall over the region means catchments are already saturated and our creeks and rivers are running high, so any further rainfall increases the chance of flooding, as the water simply won’t be able to soak into the ground," he said

"We would expect the forecast wet conditions to prolong the minor flooding that is already out there at the least, and we could see some levels rise to moderate flooding.

"While major flooding looks unlikely at this stage, floods are unpredictable by nature, so everyone should be alert and we will be keeping a close eye on forecasts as the week develops.

"SES volunteers are, as always, on standby and ready to support communities should conditions worsen."

There are a range of simple precautions that everyone can take to prepare themselves for flooding:

  • Be aware of your situation and know where to find information – listen to your emergency broadcaster, visit the SES website warnings page
  • Prepare and check your emergency kit and flood action plan
  • Never drive, walk, ride, play or swim in floodwater – it is dangerous and toxic

In the event of an emergency, information and warnings are available from the following sources

  • The SES website
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Emergency broadcasters including radio: local ABC, 3SR, Star FM, UGFM, 3NE, The River, Alpine Radio and Sky News TV.

For emergency assistance in a flood or storm, call 132 500. In a life-threatening emergency, dial 000.