NO-GO ZONE: The Orara River at Coutts Crossing (above, below and at left) on Tuesday afternoon.
NO-GO ZONE: The Orara River at Coutts Crossing (above, below and at left) on Tuesday afternoon. Emily O'Neill

Residents remain isolated by floodwaters

HOMES in the Orara region are not out of the woods yet with about 650 homes isolated from Glenreagh to Grafton due to wild weather.

The Orara River at Coutts Crossing peaked about midday yesterday, bringing more water into low-lying rural properties in the region.

SES Northern Region media spokeswoman Jenni Funari said the isolated homes and trapped home owners were resilient.

"We congratulate them because they are generally well prepared," Ms Funari said.

"They are well educated and they have a plan that they put into place."

 

The Orara River at Coutts Crossing on Tuesday afternoon.
The Orara River at Coutts Crossing on Tuesday afternoon. Emily O'Neill

Some homes are expected to be isolated for several days.

Local SES teams have reported just 15 jobs from this weather event, but one included a group of people stranded in floodwater at Lanitza on Tuesday morning.

"The people were on the roof of their car. They are safe now, but they drove into the floodwater, they drove around a 'road closed' sign and ended up on the roof calling for help," Ms Funari said. "This is a huge sign that you should not drive through floodwater.

"We've had two medical transport requests, which means when someone has a doctor's appointment that could not be moved or a critical medical, and a medical resupply, which is where we've gone and got someone medication."

 

The Orara River at Coutts Crossing on Tuesday afternoon.
The Orara River at Coutts Crossing on Tuesday afternoon. Emily O'Neill

There were two teams from Grafton and Coutts Crossing in the field yesterday.

"Apart from the medical and resupply, some storm jobs have been coming in such as leaking roofs," Ms Funari said.

"We have on standby, just in case, two flood rescue techs. They're trained to go into the water for rescue, and a flood boat on standby."

Ms Funari said the Clarence Valley got off lightly.

"This has been a small event. It's a good reminder to get your plan in place, know what to do and when you're going to do it, and have supplies in your home," she said.

"Be prepared to be isolated for 72 hours.

"Because this has been a storm event more than a flood event, water is going down quickly."

Local SES crews have been checking the Coutts Crossing gauges manually since Monday every two hours and by 3pm yesterday the Orara River had started to fall.

Many local roads are still closed. Check My Road Info online for up-to-date information.



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