City of Darebin

Flood information for the City of Darebin, encompassing local flood guides and a Municipal Flood Emergency Plan.
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Darebin council municipal map
City of Darebin municipal map

City of Darebin has been impacted by a number of significant flood events in recent years including in February 2011, February 2005 and December 2003.

Large and severe floods within the municipality generally occurs as a result of a moist warm airflow from northern Australia bringing moderate to heavy rainfall over a period of 12 hours or more following a prolonged period of general rainfall.

High intensity rainfall such as associated with thunderstorms giving average rainfall rates of more than 200mm/hour or more is likely to cause flash flooding and/or overland flows, across the urbanised parts of the municipality.


Are you at risk of flood?

potential flood area Darebin
Potential impact of major flooding in the Darebin area.

There are many areas in the City of Darebin that experience either flash or riverine flooding. Around five percent of the City of Darebin is flood prone due to its location to the Merri Creek, Darebin Creek and the Yarra River. While significant floods have occurred within the City of Darebin, none of these flood events have exceeded moderate levels.

Flash floods typically occur in low-lying areas of Fairfield, however flash flooding can occur in other areas as a result of short bursts of heavy rain fall that cannot drain away quickly.

Areas of Fairfield that may be affected by flash flooding during an extreme rainfall event include:

  • Darebin Road, Jenkins Street, Christmas Street, Kellet Street and Clifton Street

  • Clifton Street Children’s Centre

  • Station Street

  • Mitchell Street, Rathmines Street, Gillies Street and Duncan Street

  • Arthur Street

In addition, there is also a risk of flooding and isolation caused by drains overflowing. Historic records show large floods happen every 10–20 years in the area, so the next big flood may be just around the corner. 

The map to the right shows the potential impact of major flooding in the Darebin area.

Are you at risk of flood?

Streets at risk of flooding due to the Preston main drain.
Streets at risk of flooding due to the Preston main drain.

High intensity, short duration rainfall events can cause flash flooding in and around the Preston area while prolonged rainfall events may cause Merri Creek to flood.

Preston is on fairly flat terrain, which means that water flowing overland may spread out over a wide area and may sit for a number of days before subsiding.

Are you at risk of flood?

Resevoir streets flood risk
Streets at risk of flooding in Reservoir that should be avoided if flooding occurs.

Edgars Creek is the main waterway that runs through Reservoir. It flows along a 17 kilometre course from its headwaters in the suburb the City of Whittlesea at Wollert through the highly urbanised suburbs of Epping, Thomastown and Reservoir, finally joining the Merri Creek in North Coburg.

It is a seasonal creek, prone to drying out during the summer season and flooding during periods of high rainfall. Parts of the storm water management systems in the Cities of Whittlesea and Darebin drain directly into the Creek. High intensity, short duration rainfall events can cause flash flooding in and around Reservoir, while prolonged rainfall events may cause the Merri, Darebin or Edgars Creeks to flood.

Are you at risk of flood?

The City of Darebin is prone to flash flooding. Flash flooding occurs with little or no warning. It generally affects small areas but damage can be severe. It occurs after high intensity rainfall (usually associated with thunderstorms) and is short in duration. The Merri and Darebin Creeks may become flooded when there has been prolonged rainfall or due to flash floods.

The main flooding areas include the land or parks alongside the Merri and Darebin Creeks (including the Creek trails), as well as the A.H. Capp Reserve and the Northcote Golf Course. The Anderson Road Levee from Normanby Avenue to Miller Street in Thornbury, was built to protect Anderson Road, Newman Street, Strettle Street and the Merri Business Park from Merri Creek floodwaters. Darebin City Council has also constructed raingardens, and areas of porous pavement along several streets in Thornbury to slow down the flow of stormwater throughout the suburb.

The increase in volume of water during high intensity, short duration rainfall events (e.g. more than 30 millimetres/hour) can still lead to flash flooding. Streets at risk of flooding in Thornbury should be avoided if flooding occurs. These include:

  • Ford Crescent

  • St Georges Road before it reaches Dundas Street  

  • Bell Street between O’Keefe and Albert Street

  • The area around Station Street and Clarendon Street

As floodwaters spread they can threaten lives, inundate properties and businesses, destroy belongings, damage vital infrastructure and prevent access to essential public services. Often the effects of flood are long term and can be very costly, disruptive and distressing for communities involved.

The most immediate threat of floods is to people who are caught on foot or travelling in vehicles in affected areas. People are at risk of sustaining serious or fatal injuries from floodwater, especially swift moving water, and it is important never to enter flood waters on foot or attempt to drive on flooded roads.

About Flood Guides

Communities can use local flood guides to identify and better understand their local flood risk. They include information about: flood history, how to prepare & respond to floods and who to contact.

Contact Information

For information on flood warnings, see the VicEmergency website.
Visit the City of Darebin website.
Your local Catchment Mangement Authority: Melbourne Water.

Local VICSES Unit

Heidelberg VICSES Unit
446 Waterdale Rd
Heidelberg Heights, Victoria.

Municipal Flood Emergency Plan (MFEP)

Municipalities can use Municipal Flood Emergency Plans to prepare, respond and recover from flood and storm events. 
City of Darebin
Storm and Flood  Emergency Plan
- Updated April, 2019