BELLINGEN BRIDGE which is way under water today. It has a side rail which can be dropped allowing the debris to float over the top with minimised destruction.
I LIVE ON the QLD NSW border and almost all the news we receive is QUEENSLAND news. So – early this morning, when my COASTFM Brekkie News Reader mentioned BELLINGEN, it caught my attention immediately. Bellingen often doesn’t reach the news even in NSW and even in midst of BIG events. The Daughter, Kati B, contacted me by SMS a few seconds later. Yes! BELLINGEN IS FLOODED. Wooyung was NOT flooded yesterday despite the road blocks and the signs. We contacted the WOOYUNG CARAVAN PARK and they reaffirmed their NON FLOODED status. BELLINGEN, however, IS FLOODED. 7.32 metres at BELLO bridge and heading for 8.2.
Kati B and IMM had headed in from Hyde’s Creek to work in town but on reaching North Bellingen were faced with the flooded BRIDGE which separates the two halves of town. I have experienced many Flood Events in Bello over many years. I have not as yet determined the precise nature of TWEED Flooding but I know the Bellinger very well.
Most of those experiences were without mobile phones. Today, Kati B was able to ring me from the outside the Providore in North Bellingen where IMM and her were topping up provisions but lots of guesswork used to go into flood assessment in my previous experiences. Still has my adrenalin on the drip and a strange excitement. Memories of children and floating VWs and calculated estimations of how high the waters would come.
I have very few images of those times. Certainly I have none to hand, but I have some fine mental images of days flooded in and floodboats bringing supplies across.
1974, the Cyclone came down off the coast and URUNGA was flooded in with the rarely seen flooding of RALEIGH BRIDGE and Urunga Caravan Park.
The loos near the River and the Bridge will most likely be under water. At times when they have accommodated temporary residents, there have been concerns about said residents being caught unawares but I don’t think we have actually lost anyone as yet.
I just checked my FACEBOOK friends and several of them are flooded in and most of them seem to be enjoying it. No work today! That indicates that Urunga is also flooded in. That’s dramatic.
One of the Kalang Road bridges west of Bellingen. I lived on Kalang when the Kids were little. The School Bus used to pick the children up from the schools when waters began to rise. The driver then honked the horn to let families know the Kids were on their way home.
COAST FM at 12.01pm NSW time – says that water is across the road at URUNGA and north of Frederickton. That’s dramatic too.
Lifted this from the RTA site.
BELLINGEN – WATERFALL WAY between PACIFIC HIGHWAY and DORRIGO MOUNTAIN
ADVERSE WEATHER – FLOODING
Both directions – All
There is no access to Bellingen.
Motorists are advised to delay their journey.
THE WALKWAY AT THE END OF THE FOOTBRIDGE OVER URUNGA LAGOON. Most likely flooded today. (That’s my academic analysis. )
The West Australian
Saturday 29 March 1890
NEW SOUTH WALES.
THE DAMAGE IN THE COUNTRY
(FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT)
SYDNEY, March 28. 1890
Walcha, a township 300 miles north of Sydney, is under water. The inhabitants have removed their things to a place of safety. Great damage has been done. The river at Walcha fell considerably yesterday. It is raining in torrents at Armidale, where the floods are the greatest ever experienced. Several houses on the low land at Armidale are flooded. The gasworks also are flooded, and the fires have been put out. The damage on tbe Bellinger river is estimated at between £35,000 and £40,000. The river is again rising. Thirty three inches of rain have fallen at Fernmount up to date, and nearly three inches fell last night. At Inverell the river rose 20 feet, overflowing its banks in many places. Families, in many instances, have deserted their homes. The people in the Kempsey district are preparing for another flood. The largest flood since 1878 has been experienced at Tenterfield. Several residents have left their homes, and one house is in water 4 feet deep.
The Canberra Times ; Monday 15 February 1937
FLOOD DANGER PASSES QUICKLY IN THE NORTH
SWIFT RISE AND FALL
Flood danger on the North Coast is rapidly passing as the flood waters are being carried swiftly away, and although some townships are still isolated by water; the worst appears to be over.
The severest local floods for 40 years were experienced at Gleniffer, on the Bellinger River,which had 32 inches of rain in 48 hours; Much damage has been caused to property, maize crops being washed away, and fencing swept out to sea while heavy losses of stock are expected to be revealed when farmers can inspect their flooded lands.
At Gienreagh, the Orara River which had risen more than 30 feet: dropped 9 ft last night and rain ceased altogether this morning.
Gangs of men are out repairing bridges, filling in washaways and clearing railway lines. The falling, of the river has made it posslble to reach Glenreagh by rail, though roads are still impassable. At East Bellingen, residents were forced to evacuate their homes.
Occupants of Gleniffer stocked their houses with provisions to withstand a flood seige, and have received no mail or food yet. Their only available means of communication waa the telephone.