Exposed sewer pipes after swell

The eastern corner of Whiting Beach after the swell ripped 2m deep and 1m wide of sand from the banks.
The eastern corner of Whiting Beach after the swell ripped 2m deep and 1m wide of sand from the banks. Debrah Novak

THIS week's massive swell has increased the need for remedial erosion work at Yamba's Whiting Beach but with more storms forecast, Mother Nature will be playing a leading role.

When up to 3m of the beach wall were lost to Wednesday night's massive swell and high tides, the council's repair plan had to be redesigned, said Clarence Valley Council deputy general manager Rob Donges.

"We're working in a fluid environment, we have to design and work with what is there on the day," he said.

Drainage and sewer pipes have been exposed and damaged by the erosion which could take up to four weeks to repair.

"The problem is another low is on the way, We have to work with what nature gives us."

There was more to solving the problem than just dumping more sand. "If you are not careful you just redirect the wave energy somewhere else," he said.


Erosion facts

 Whiting Beach started to erode last year, losing 3m by October.

 Another 3m was lost in this week's storm.

 Sandbagging deals with the symptom, not the cause.

 The council plans to consult with experts in wave dynamics.

Topics:  high tide rob donges swell weather

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