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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
just got electricity on after 48hrs without.hadnt been through a big storm before like this "30 year storm" as telegraph puts it.Central coast and Hunter region was hit really bad on fri nite and saturday.flooding and strong winds.
Hundreds of trees were blown down in Umina, some on houses and garages.



ive taken some shots just down from my place /we were blocked in on fri nite with 30m gum across main road out.









some shots from newcastle








THE death toll from the severe storms sweeping the NSW Hunter and Central Coast regions has risen to eight after emergency crews found the body of man swept away when a road collapsed beneath a family's car.

The search for another man, swept into a stormwater drain at Newcastle, continues today as Sydney, the Hunter region and the NSW central coast see the first break in severe weather in at least three days.

Rivers have breached their banks, trees have crushed houses and cars - killing one person - and more than 100,000 people are without power.

Man crushed in car

A 29-year-old Heddon Greta man was driving a white Ford Courier utility on Leggetts Drive, at Brunkerville in the Lake Macquarie area, just after 6pm (AEST) yesterday when a tree fell across the roadway and onto his vehicle, crushing the cabin, police said.

But in the worst incident, two adults and three children, all thought to be members of the same family, were killed when a section of the Pacific Highway collapsed at Somersby on the Central Coast around 4pm on Friday.

The car went crashing down an embankment and into a flooded Piles Creek.

The bodies of the children - a boy aged nine and two girls aged two and three, have been taken to the Newcastle morgue.

Emergency crews retrieved the body of a 29-year-old woman this morning and have found the body of a 30-year-old man.

A 40-year-old Newcastle man is still missing after being swept down a stormwater drain in the city's north yesterday.

While a couple died after their four-wheel-drive was swept off a bridge over a flooded river at Clarence Town in the Hunter Valley on Friday. Their bodies were found yesterday morning.

Major evacuation

More than 1000 residents have been evacuated from their homes as floodwaters rose in Maitland, Singleton and Tuggerah Lake.

Flooding in some areas is believed to have peaked, including the Hunter River at Singleton, in the Hunter Valley, which is slowly falling from its peak last night near 14.04 metres, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) said on its website this morning.

But although rains are easing, the Hunter River, at Maitland, is expected to exceed major flood levels of 10.7m and peak at 11.3m around midnight tonight.

The town is not under threat, but low-lying areas will continue to see flooding, the BOM says.

At Singleton, up river from Maitland, the river has peaked at 13.2m and is expected to drop to 13m, the major flood level, by 2pm today.

"River levels for the Wollombi river at Bulga remain above the major flood level and continue to slowly rise. This additional flood water from the Wollombi is not expected to cause higher flood levels at Singleton,'' the BOM website said.

"The flood peak in the Hunter River is currently upstream of Greta.

"Major flooding, similar to the February 1971 event is expected at Maitland.''

Electricity cut

Some residents have resorted to paddling down streets, reports say, with many homes still flooded and thousands of homes and businesses still without power.

But NSW and interstate emergency crews hope a break in the storms today will give them a chance to respond to the thousands of calls from people requesting help to protect their homes and businesses.

NSW Premier Morris Iemma on Friday declared a natural disaster in the affected region, triggering assistance for local residents, businesses and councils, but has ruled out upgrading that to a state of emergency.

More than 300mm of rain has fallen in parts of the Hunter with more than 200mm in areas of the Central Coast and Sydney since Thursday.

Showers will ease along the coast today with weather clearing in inland areas, which were the most affected by the storms, the BOM says.

The State Emergency Service (SES) has received more than 10,000 calls for assistance from home- and business owners, with the majority coming from the Hunter and Central Coast.

Up to 6000 SES personnel are responding to the calls with help from emergency crews from country NSW, ACT and Victoria.
 

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Bloody hell, that is some serious stuff. So many deaths already too. What brought it on? It seems very unseasonal weather, especially for down so far south.
 

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Check out this prophetic article posted on Coastalwatch just three weeks ago:

Pacific parking lot
http://www.coastalwatch.com/news/article.aspx?articleId=147&cateId=3



With an ever increasing number of colliers being moored off the eastern seaboard, our Pacific Ocean wonderland is looking more and more like a parking lot for coal companies and port authorities.

For a number of years the Hunter Branch of Surfrider Foundation Australia has been fielding questions on the issue of what effects, if any, the mooring of ships off the coast have on the coastal environment. Previously, concerns have been expressed to the Branch when over 39 ships were parked off the coast. Many questions have been raised such as: does the increase in internationally provenanced litter correlate to the ships offshore; are there any implications to their being out there in relation to the increase in storm surges due to Climate Change; does the presence adversely affect wave heights; what are the social ramifications of having people isolated for so long so close to ‘civilisation’; and how does the whole economic and environmental issues relating to continued coal production coming out of the Hunter effect the Planet?

That was then, this is now.

With nearly 100 colliers moored from Newcastle all the way to Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Surfrider Foundation Australia is receiving queries and concerns from people along the Coast expressing their concern and anger over what is happening to their environment, locally and internationally.

The increased awareness and acceptance into the Global Warming, Climate Change and Sea Level Rise phenomena are heightening people’s willingness to question. Australians are joining the worldwide chorus and are questioning the so called economic benefits of the huge tonnage of coal heading out of the Hunter, the inability of governments to initiate cleaner technologies on the way to seeking alternate renewable energy sources, and question what are the effects of the infrastructure of this industry right here, right now.

While there may be stringent ‘guidelines’ as to the appropriate disposal of waste materials from the colliers, laws against the illegal dumping of ballast, and international covenants governing seafaring practises, Surfrider Foundation Australia is concerned that compliance and adherence to these protocols are being ignored, or at best being paid shallow lip service. Please consider, if the Australian Navy is guilty of throwing waste off their vessels, and Australia is supposed to be the benchmark, what chance do we have if there are colliers out their flying flags of convenience and coming from countries where the environmentalism is a luxury?

Global warming, sea level rise and in the increase and ferocity of storms were mentioned earlier, imagine if we had a 1974/1978 style storm and the fleet were caught off guard? Stockton Beach with its Sygna wreck could be the norm?

From investigations undertaken by Surfrider Foundation Australia, there is no current research investigating the possible effects of large numbers of ships being moored off our Coast, no one is policing polluting, no one is gauging the perceptions of the much sought after tourist market, and no one is officially asking questions ... until now.

It is important for our coastal communities to add this challenge to the escalating list of issues our representatives need to address. – Chris Tola.
 

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fabian the first pic u posted is from the junction fair shopping centre car park in newcastle. i was in the junction then, just came out of the shopping centre after getting my hair cut and the downpour came. i had to take off my shoes and socks and roll up my jeans just to cross the street. Driving home thankgod we had a 4WD cause all around union st and cookshill was flooded
 

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Bloody hell, that is some serious stuff. So many deaths already too. What brought it on? It seems very unseasonal weather, especially for down so far south.
It is serious stuff and the news reports are saying it's a "once in a 30 year occurrence", so it IS unseasonal weather.

I'm agog as many tourists (mostly locals) are @ the grounded tanker.
 

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Dammit. When I developed an extreme weather thread 3-1/2 years ago, it was immediately followed by Sydney's's 2004 'Father's Day' hail ice storm which caused $millions in damage.

On Thursday night-Friday when I was collecting pics for the accompanying lightning thread it was just becoming apparent that something tragic was unfolding on the NSW Central Coast (acknowledged in my second post on that thread).

Well, with climate change we are being warned to expect these events more often. Commisserations to the South Coast people ...I hesitated about posting this one collected Thursday for the lightning thread, which was conceived for visual enjoyment. It's a lightning strike over the Customs House at Newcastle.



Regarding the discussion going on the environmental effects of the scores of colliers that moor off Newcastle and down the coast from there.

It's been like that for decades. Long ago, I once had an experience - sailing single-handed in a storm (Mrs Bronte down sea-sick) from Port Stephens - and trying for six or seven hours to bring a disabled yacht into the Newcastle River, hoping for help from the RAAF crash boat base there that services Williamtown ( and which has/had an admirable reputation for assisting yachties).

When darkness fell I ended up tacking among those coilliers, all lit up like a night city at sea, and trying to line up the navigation leads into the river. During the day the most sobering sight had been a huge tanker - Swedish from memory - that had been driven ashore on 90 Mile Beach some years earlier. I guess it's still there, and it now has a companion - unless the vessel grounded in this storm can be re-floated.

Hope so. Obviously, in the '70s I did manage to get into the river eventually - and we were kindly set to rights and got underway again the next day by the RAAF crash boat base.

So, some thoughts are with the Newcastle and South Coast people who have suffered losses in the past few days.
 

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Good news just out the Maitland has been spared major flooding and now they are evacuating furth down the river Newcastle and Hexum.

As for all that coal mining, I don't think were thinking about the future much. I was lucky / unlucky to get a tour of one of the colliaries near the New England highway. WOW! Most people never see the complete enviromental degradation these mining activies have. Massive, gigantic open cut mines as far as the eye can see.

Truly shocking.

Lets hope the river doesn't breach it's banks further towards Newcastle.

js
 

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Land of droughts and flooding rains indeed. Remarkable to think that in the space of a couple of days, parts of the hunter received half the average rainfall of London!

Good luck to all the CC and hunter forumers up there. Also, it might sound out of line for me saying this too early, but what happened on the old Pac Highway at Somersby was unacceptable IMO, especially since the paper quoted a neighbour who said that the road had been sinking for a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
^yes that was a shocker. just terrible. the 10th death yesterday was a when a tree fell on a car with father of 1 inside.
Also a new problem with residents up near Entrance-LOOTERS?? wtf. has to be the lowest of all lows. couldnt you just kill the pricks.
im not sure if i can get to work tommorrow. apparently theres 8 sections of track between Hornsby and woy woy that require fixing. so maybe buse? should be fun with the thousands of commuters that travel to sydney everyday.
checkout captpilkos disaster photos>
http://www.flickr.com/photos/captpilko/

i wonder whats going to happen with the 40,000tonne pasher bulker?



some from flickr

 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·

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It's a billion-dollar disaster

Your first link works again.

It's a billion-dollar disaster

http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2007/06/12/1181414305798.html?page=fullpage#contentSwap1


From flood to fire ... the Morgan family burns ruined belongings after the flood swept through their property at Whittingham, near Singleton.
Photo: Nick Moir

Danny John, Malcolm Brown and Ben Cubby
June 13, 2007

THE worst was over and the huge job of cleaning up was under way in the Hunter Valley last night, as the economic cost of the deadly storms was projected to climb to $1 billion.

Claims for damage from the storms are already running in the hundreds of millions of dollars but the wider losses to home owners, businesses and the impact on infrastructure will push the figure much higher.

The coal industry is facing hundreds of millions of dollars in lost sales. Even if coal shipments resume this week when the rail system is expected to return, the lost shipments since Friday would total an estimated $115 million.

Two of the state's biggest insurers, Insurance Australia Group and Suncorp, have already received more than 20,500 claims, ranging from those for losses as a result of minor water damage to cars to the catastrophic damage to homes and all of their belongings.

The level of damage is rising to equal that of the Canberra bushfires of 2003, which cost $350 million, and almost as much as the devastation caused by Cyclone Larry in North Queensland last year.

Another 1500 claims had been lodged with other companies, the Insurance Council of Australia said. Last night it put the estimate of the damage to be covered by its members so far at between $220 million and $250 million.

But both IAG, which owns NRMA Insurance, and Suncorp, whose operations include AAMI and Vero, said claims were still being made in large numbers and that it was inevitable that the final bill would be higher.

"The number of claims are so vast that things are changing almost every minute," an NRMA spokeswoman said last night.

It could be a year before final estimates could be calculated.

Teams of assessors are working around the clock to process claims so that money can be paid to people this week.

Thousands of Hunter residents, from Singleton to Newcastle, were yesterday scraping mud and debris from their homes and businesses - a job that will continue for weeks.

As well as storm damage from the metre-deep torrent that poured through Newcastle's central business district on Friday, shopkeepers have had to contend with isolated incidents of looting. The general manager of Harvey Norman in Newcastle West, Paul Murphy, said he had lost about a million dollars of electrical goods to the floods and more to looters.

At a nearby pub, a security guard was said to have been beaten up on Sunday when a group of about 30 people broke in to steal money and cigarettes. Some abandoned cars had been broken into, and police warned that criminals were taking advantage of the chaos by posing as State Emergency Service volunteers and telling people to evacuate, before robbing their homes.

A miasma hung over Newcastle's city centre yesterday as hundreds of sodden carpets and other goods were hung out to dry.

At Maitland, flooding of the city was averted by the outstanding success of the mitigation scheme devised after the 1955 floods, but in the lower parts of the city the levels were still rising yesterday, and SES volunteers had to assure residents they were not in danger.

The Catholic Bishop of Maitland and Newcastle, Michael Malone, called on people to thank the Lord, but added: "We can stop praying for rain for a little while."

At Whittingham, near Singleton, Ross and Carol Morgan and their children spent the day hosing, working a backhoe and burning rubbish. The lawn, developed and manicured over 34 years of residency, had been reduced to a mud hole.

"It is a muddy and disgusting mess," said daughter Chelsea.

At Singleton, Andrew Solman and his girlfriend Lisa Brincat, who live in the suburb of Dunolly, spent the day hosing mud and shifting debris after a metre of water roared through their house at the weekend.

"We have lost carpets and have things like kitchen cupboards ruined, and our yard was covered in an inch and half of mud," Mr Solman said.

Throughout the middle and lower Hunter regions, the flood continued to form an inland sea yesterday, isolating farms and small villages.

All Catholic schools throughout the region were closed, and principals of the state schools that remained open told parents there would be no repercussions for their children missing school if they could not attend. The Department of Education said 28 schools in the Hunter and Central Coast would remain closed today.

Gordon Peden, who lives near Maitland, said he had spent an hour getting his daughter across five kilometres of flood-prone roads to Grossmann High School yesterday.

Electricity wires were still down in parts of Newcastle, houses were boarded up and ruined furniture and mattresses lined footpaths.

About 20,000 people in the Hunter and on the Central Coast were waiting to have their power connected, and health authorities warned of water pollution following the possible breakdown of up to 14 sewer pumping stations. Everything that had been exposed to the flood should be treated as contaminated, they warned.
 

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My concolences to those that have lost a loved one.

Why is it that Newcastle gets all the dissasters? Earthquakes, floods, droughts!
 

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I heard the storm was formed by two major storm cells combining. I thank mother nature for knocking out 2 days of school. The long weekend ended on monday it is now wednesday and im still off school. Theirs a posibility i will be tomorrow aswell!!!!!!!!!!!

:D
 

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Newcastle and the Hunter Valley are used to natural disasters. These floods are not uncommon. There have even been atleast two worse floods in past 55 years. I went to high school in Maitland and it was a regular occurrence for guys who lived in areas like Morpeth, Hinton, Patterson and Bolwarra to be cut off from Maitland and were unable to attend school and work etc.

Floods, fires, hail storms and earth quakes have all occurred in recent years.
 
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