Crime Stoppers

Flooding – Daly River and Katherine regions – Update #4

Monday 28-Dec-2015 10:35

Northern Territory first responders have been kept busy with the flooding in the Top End as the number of rescue operations increases.

There is still no sign of a 28-year-old man who was swept away in flood waters near Peppimenarti on Christmas Day. Heavy rain in the region is hampering the search, which is continuing by air and ground.

“Unfortunately an elderly woman was drowned yesterday near Beswick community after the car in which she was a passenger became stuck on a flooded crossing at Dook Creek,” Region 2 Controller Commander Bruce Porter said.

“Additionally several other stranded parties have airlifted from across the region to safety in Katherine and Pine Creek.”

Three people were airlifted from El Rancho Station near Dorisvale Crossing to Pine Creek. A further four people remain on the station, who elected to stay as floodwaters were receding and they have adequate supplies and are in contact by satellite phone.

The waters at Dorisvale Crossing are at the second-highest ever recorded level, with only the 1998 floods recording higher readings. Commander Porter advised “it is expected that there will be a renewed flood peak in the Daly River Community area exceeding what is currently being experienced.  It is not improbable that the river will rise into the mid 15 metre height. Any remaining residents in the Daly River Community area need to be aware of this possible height and need to seriously consider their situation. If you are going to be at risk you need to consider your options immediately.

“A helicopter was dispatched to relocate two women from Djarrung Outstation in the Flora National Park area.They however refused to leave and have adequate supplies. Police will continue to monitor them.”

Two men have been located on the Armstrong River south of Top Springs. They have been stranded with their vehicle since 26 December and are being assessed by Police at Kalkarindji. There are no immediate concerns for their welfare as they have supplies.

“While it is good to see that most people have planned ahead and are adequately supplied, we are continuing to monitor the area to identify any parties in need of assistance,” Commander Porter said.

“Conditions are still very dangerous, as we have sadly seen, and it is important that people behave responsibly and do not enter flood waters in vehicles or on foot.

“Police are conducting aerial sweeps today. Anyone who does become stranded should stay with their vehicles if safe to do so, or seek safety at the nearest high ground. It is far easier to spot a vehicle from the air than a person, and if a rescue is required that is our best chance of finding you. Anyone considering travel is urged to check the road conditions through SecureNT before they set out, and to ensure they have adequate supplies if they proceed.”

For assistance, call the Police Assistance Line 131 444 or 000 in an emergency. 

The NTES Emergency Assistance line is 132 500.

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Flood information is available on 1800 500 700.