The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a flood watch for along the Macleay River. The following updates are from our reporters, Kempsey and Nambucca councils, the SES and the Weather Bureau.
This was the latest on conditions in the region on Wednesday, July 6.
6pm: From Nambucca Council.
5pm: From Kempsey Shire Council.
There is water over the road in many locations due to the localised heavy rainfall. Please limit travel to essential travel, drive to conditions and proceed with caution. Do not drive through flood waters. Water over the road is impacting many key locations, including Crescent Head Road, South West Rocks Road and the Macleay Valley Way at Cooks Lane, First Lane and Sutherlands Lane. Please note roads that are not officially closed may still be impassable but not yet inspected by staff as there is a high demand.
We have received the following updates for bridges that cross the Macleay River upstream of the Kempsey Traffic Bridge:
Please do not cross any bridges that have water across the deck. There may be hidden dangers.
4pm: Reporter Ellie Chamberlain has captured footage of the heavy rainfall around the South West Rocks area.
3.30pm: Kempsey Shire Council has started pumping in Stuarts Point to remove surface water. This pumping is happening to remove the water that may seep into the ground, not because the groundwater has reached the surface. With the ongoing intense rain it is expected that the groundwater will rise to high levels.
2.30pm: Kempsey Shire Council says preparations are being made in Stuarts Point in case pumping is needed. There is now water over roads in several locations. Take care as some may still be open but have not yet been inspected due to high demand. The following roads have been marked as impacted:
Water may rise rapidly in some locations and lead to further road closures.
It is anticipated that most bridges that cross the Macleay River upstream of Kempsey will begin closing this afternoon.
The following NAIDOC events have been postponed due to the heavy rain.
2pm: Kempsey Shire Council's flood cameras show how much river levels are rising. Manly Hydraulics Lab maintains a flood monitoring camera on the Macleay River at Kempsey as part of the Kempsey flood warning system. Camera images are updated every hour in normal conditions. The Sherwood Bridge flood monitoring camera displays the bridge deck so residents can see if the bridge is affected by flooding of the Macleay River. The Sherwood Bridge flood monitoring camera displays the bridge deck so residents can see if the bridge is affected by flooding of the Macleay River. The time stamp on the Sherwood Bridge camera uses Australian Eastern Standard Time, NOT Australian Eastern Daylight Time.
10:30am: A flood warning has been issued for the Nambucca River. Moderate flooding is likely at Bowraville from this afternoon. Minor flooding is likely at Macksville See BOM NSW warnings/
10am: Kempsey Shire Council has closed its floodgates as a precaution. This includes the floodgates at Kinchela Creek, Belmore River, Christmas Creek and Euroka Creek. The flood relief gates at Kinchela Creek and Belmore River are also closed. The Macleay River upstream of Turners Flat remains relatively low due to the coastal focused rainfall. The river at Turners Flat had a rising trend overnight, however the water levels remain well below a concerning level. Should the current rain pass quickly and result in only minor river rises, the floodgates will re-open later in the week.
In the event of flooding, Kempsey Shire Council urges people to:
Residents and visitors are urged to remain cautious on the roads for localised impacts and not attempt to drive through floodwaters or cross flooded bridges. Council's work teams are inspecting roads and any areas of concern will be advised.
Council welcomes advice from residents in outlying areas about any concerns. These can be reported to Council on 6566 3200.
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