John D'Orazio

John D'Orazio

Former Minister for Police and Emergency Services; Justice; Community Safety

    Murchison flood volunteers congratulated

    26/03/2006 9:03 AM

    Kalbarri residents and volunteers today celebrated their successful efforts to protect the town from the worst effects of one of the biggest floods of the Murchison River in memory.

    Emergency Services Minister John D’Orazio visited Kalbarri to congratulate all those involved in an effort which saw the town escape damage to commercial and residential properties.

    “As well as Kalbarri, there were 11 pastoral station homesteads affected by flood waters down the length of the Murchison River,” Mr D’Orazio said.

    “More than 60 SES volunteers from as far as Geraldton, Carnarvon, Eneabba and Morawa joined Kalbarri residents and people on stations to protect the township and homesteads.

    “It was a massive effort, with local people including even backpackers and school students, joining Government and council workers and volunteers from SES, Volunteer Marine Rescue Services and local fire services.

    “In total, 35 rolls of builders’ black plastic and up to 400 tonnes of sand were used to construct levee banks, with more than 9,000 sandbags placed in Kalbarri and 4,000 at homesteads along the river.”

    Mr D’Orazio said effective action helped ensure that Kalbarri’s power and water supplies remained intact, so that recovery could begin immediately.

    “Kalbarri is rapidly returning to normal, but it may be some weeks before all the station homesteads can be cleaned and re-occupied,” he said.

    “Staff from the Shires of Northampton and Murchison, Western Australia Police, FESA, the Flood Warning Centre and Bureau of Meteorology played a vital role in planning and co-ordinating this magnificent effort.

    “FESA has learnt a great deal from this flood, which will provide valuable lessons for future flood planning and decision-making in the Murchison catchment.”

    Minister's office: 9213 7150