2022 floods and Christmas Day 2023-January 2024 storms

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Overview

Gannawarra Shire Council continues to assist the community as it recovers from the October-December 2022 floods and responds to storms that have impacted residents on Christmas Day 2023 and early January 2024.

This page is a resource for residents including details for road closures, support available to impacted residents and community events and activities.

NOTE: If you need assistance due to flooding, please phone the Flood Recovery Hotline on 1800 560 760 8.30am-5pm Monday-Friday (closed on weekends and public holidays), or Council on (03) 5450 9333.

Since January 2023 Council has produced a regular publication outlining local recovery efforts and support available. 

To view the latest edition of this publication, please click on the image above.

Printed copies of the publication are available from Council's Customer Service centres in Kerang and Cohuna.

ABOVE: Marne Street, Kerang following rain on Christmas Day 2023.

Latest updates/warnings

To stay up to date with the latest weather and flood warnings, please visit the following websites by clicking on any of the images below:

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Have you been impacted by the floods/storms?

Have you been impacted by floods or storms in one of the following ways:

  • Water has gone through your residence or property
  • Water is or has surrounded your property, leading to isolation
  • You have needed to evacuate, or have chosen to evacuate
  • Your business has closed
  • Your agricultural business has been impacted

If you have been impacted by one of the ways listed above or require assistance from Council for a similar situation, please contact Council during business hours on (03) 5450 9333 or complete the form below.

Was your business impacted by the Christmas Day 2023/January 2024 floods and storms?

Support is available for businesses impacted by the Christmas Day 2023/January 2024 floods and storms:

Report your damage

Please complete the form under the Have you been impacted by the floods/storms heading to keep connected with assistance made available by the State or Federal governments. Information provided also assists Council to report statistical data (not including personal information), which is provided to all levels of government to highlight the impacts these weather events had on businesses in the Gannawarra.

Business Victoria's Business Recovery Advisory Service

The Business Recovery Advisory Service, delivered by Business Victoria in partnership with Australian Industry Group, can provides expert guidance and tailored support to small businesses. For more information, click on the image below:

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Partners in Wellbeing

Partners in Wellbeing provides free, confidential, one on one support to improve your financial, business and emotional wellbeing. For more information, click on the image below:

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Business Support Flood Recovery Program

The Business Support Flood Recovery program aims to help businesses establish resilience in their operations and company culture to ensure long-term success.

The program provides assistance to small business owners (up to 20 employees) with everything from hiring and onboarding employees to creating a safe and productive workplace and establishing a strong business management foundation.

Enrolment in the program is FREE for businesses, with under 20 employees, severely impacted by 2022/23 Victorian flood events.

For more information, click on the image below or phone the Business Solutions Hub “Business Support Flood Recovery” hotline on 1300 445 687 and select option 1.

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Road closures 

The following Council-managed roads are closed due to flood damage (information correct as of 9.00am Monday, 19 February 2024):

  • Apex Park Road, Reedy Lake (bridge failure)
  • Connelly Road, Kerang (between Hawthorne and Dip roads)
  • Doyle Road, Quambatook
  • Flannerys Road, Macorna (between Leitchville-Kerang and Harrisons roads)
  • Gilmour Lane, Tragowel (between Loddon Valley Highway and Stedman Road)
  • Knight Road, Quambatook (between Ninyeunook and Boort-Quambatook roads)
  • Love Road, Macorna (between Kerang-Macorna and Mowat roads)
  • Macorna Road, Macorna (between Sawyer Road to Loddon Valley Highway)
  • Marshall Road, Kerang (between Normanville Road and Shelley Lane)
  • Meran Road, Meran (between Kerang-Boort and White Elephant roads)
  • Old Echuca Road, Kerang (between Nixon and Kerang-Macorna roads)
  • Shelley Lane, Wandella (between Hawthorne and Dip roads)
  • Walker Road, Kerang (between Hawthorne and Dip roads)
  • Wishart Road, Macorna (between Kerang-Macorna and McDougal roads)
  • Wood Lane, Appin (bridge over Loddon River is damaged)

Information regarding road closures can also be found via the VicTraffic website. To view this page, please click on the image below:

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Support and donations

The Victorian and Australian governments have provided financial support for people, businesses and farmers affect by the 2022 floods. Although many of the grants have closed, the following are still available for eligible residents including:

  • Business Groups Flood Recovery Grants (applications close 31 October 2023): To apply, please click here.
  • State Schools Relief: For more information, please click here.

For more information regarding additional assistance available, please visit the Victorian Government's 2022 Flood Recovery portal by clicking on the image below:

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Need for Feed

Farmers needing to access fodder for their livestock can apply for assistance from Need for Feed Australia. Established in 2006/07, this Lions International-supported initiative is recognised as the leading provider of emergency fodder at a state and national level by governments and other agencies. 

For more information and to apply, please click on the image below:

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Gannawarra Giving Account

The Gannawarra Giving Account has been reactivated to assist with the community’s recovery from the 2022 floods.

Initially created by Northern District Community Health and the Gannawarra Resilience Committee - a group consisting of 28 agencies working together to ensure planned and coordinated community support across the Gannawarra Shire - the account will support initiatives that help rebuild community connections and assist individuals affected by the floods.

Managed by Northern District Community Health, all donations over $2 are tax deductible.

For more information or to donate, please click on the image below:

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GIVIT

GIVIT is working with the State Government to manage donations of essential items and services for people impacted by floods across the state.

GIVIT is managing corporate and public offers of donations of items, services and funds for people impacted by floods across parts of Victoria through the GIVIT Storms and Flooding Appeal.

GIVIT works directly with councils, outreach teams, recovery organisations, charities, community groups and schools to identify exactly what’s needed to make sure people get what they need, when they need it.

If you are a charity, council, outreach team, recovery organisation, community group and you are assisting people in Victoria impacted by flooding, please register for free by clicking here. Once registered, you can request donations of items, vouchers and services to support the community.

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Emergency Recovery Victoria structural assessments

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Has your house or business been affected by the 2022 floods? If it has, you can get a free assessment of structures on your property, like buildings or caravans.

The assessment will tell you about:

  • The damage to the structure;
  • Whether it is dangerous to live in or use; and
  • What extra support may be available to you if you are eligible

You can use your structural assessment as part of an insurance claim, or to tell tradespeople about the repairs you need. 

To register for an assessment, please click on the image above or phone the Flood Recovery Hotline on 1800 560 760.

For more information regarding structural assessments, please click on the short animation below:

 

Assistance for Primary Producers

Rural Financial Counselling Service support

RFCS Victoria West’s Small Business and Rural Financial Counsellors are available to assist farmers and small business owners navigate the range of flood relief grants and government support.

Team members can assist from the beginning to the end of the application process and support you through your flood recovery.

RFCS Victoria West also has a team of qualified Wellbeing Counsellors available to ensure anyone working with a financial counsellor is fully supported.

For more information, please phone 1300 735 578 or click on the image below:

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Agriculture Victoria

Agriculture Victoria has developed a range of resources to assist farmers during the flood recovery process.

Agricultural losses can be reported via the online form or by contacting the Agriculture Recovery team on 0427 694 185 or at recovery@agriculture.vic.gov.au

For more information, click on the image below and visit the "What to do after a flood" or "Resources for farm recovery after flood" sections:

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Farm waste management

The Environment Protection Authority Victoria has developed a fact sheet regarding cleaning up your home and property safely following a flood event. To view this fact sheet, please click on the image below:

Rural Aid

Rural Aid can assist with the following items:

Fodder: Rural Aid sources and delivers fodder for primary producers when there is a localised need for assistance.

Domestic Water: Rural Aid coordinates domestic water deliveries to assist farmers in need of household water. All farmers registered with Rural Aid can request a load of domestic water once per quarter, per farm. A local water carter will then to deliver a load of potable water directly to your house tank.

Farm Army: The Farm Army is a job posting platform for farmers and workers or volunteers. Farmers can post a variety of jobs on a volunteer or paid basis. They can also offer positions on a contra basis, where applicants work in exchange for meals and/or accommodation. Rural Aid provides the platform where farmers list jobs, but is not involved in the applicant selection process.

For more information regarding these services, please click on the image below:

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Disposal of flood waste, including sandbags 

Flood waste from the Christmas Day 2023 and early January 2024 storms can be disposed of at any of Council’s transfer stations.

For details regarding transfer station locations and opening hours, please click here. Residents accessing this service will need to provide their name, address and phone number upon request.

Sandbag disposal

Sandbags that have been in contact with floodwater can be taken to Council’s transfer stations at Cohuna, Kerang, Lalbert and Quambatook for disposal. For locations and operating hours, please click here.

If you have large quantities of sandbags for disposal, please contact Council on (03) 5450 9333.

As outlined in the Transfer Station Fees and Charges document, disposal of sandbags is covered in the Domestic waste delivered by any other means category.

Information regarding the disposal of sandbags can be found on the Environment Protection Authority Victoria website. To view this page, please click here.

Cleaning up your property safely

The Environment Protection Authority Victoria has developed a fact sheet regarding cleaning up your home and property safely following a flood event. To view this fact sheet, please click on the image below:

Beware of asbestos

WorkSafe has developed a fact sheet regarding the dangers of asbestos-containing materials when cleaning up after a flood. To view this fact sheet, please click on the image below:

  

 

Additional resources and information

For more information regarding resources and information, please click on any of the images below:

Information that can assist residents returning home

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Minimising risks associated with mould

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2022 Victorian Floods
Recovery Support Program

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Flood recovery support
for Victorian farmers

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Legal support, financial counselling and mental health referrals

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Providing a range of health services and support to the Gannawarra community

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Practical help and resources to use before, during and after emergencies.

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Frequently asked questions
regarding cleaning up
after disasters, such as floods

Information for tenants and landowners of properties impacted by the floods

 

Inquiry into the 2022 Flood Event in Victoria

The Victorian Parliamentary Legislative Council Environment and Planning Committee is investigating the state’s preparedness for and response to the October-December 2022 floods.

The inquiry will look into the flood event as a whole and the areas affected, and consider factors such as what caused or contributed to the Flood Event; emergency services; government policy; flood mitigation strategies; and the Victoria planning framework. 

To learn more about the inquiry, including dates for public hearing, please click here.

Council provided a submission to the inquiry, developed with input from residents impacted by the floods, the Gannawarra Community Recovery Committee, flood observers and Council staff. To view this submission, please click on the image below: 

Gannawarra Municipal Recovery Plan

Council is working with the community to guide our recovery from the October-December 2022 floods.

To assist with these efforts, a Municipal Recovery Plan has been developed, featuring close to 50 priority actions across 11 target areas.

To view the Gannawarra Municipal Recovery Plan, please click on the image below:

Gannawarra Reflections video series

Council and Northern District Community Health have partnered to produce the Gannawarra Reflections video series, which highlights how residents were impacted by the October-December 2022 floods and how the community continues to support each other.

To view any of the videos, please click on the heading below.

Reedy Lake

Major flooding of the Loddon River and Wandella Creek inundated properties and left residents living between Kerang and Lake Charm isolated during the October-December 2022 floods.

In the first of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, Katrina talks about how she and her young family managed during this period.


Kerang

During October 2022 Kerang residents united to fill thousands of sandbags, which were used to protect properties and infrastructure across the Gannawarra.

In the second of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, Kerang Fire Brigade Captain, Ramon Steel talks about efforts undertaken to protect properties from major flooding of the Loddon River for a second time this century.


Quinn family farm

The October-December 2022 floods significantly impacted the Gannawarra's agricultural sector.

In the third of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, the Quinn family talk about how they and the community united to protect infrastructure and livestock from the floods.

Murrabit

Murrabit and district was significantly impacted by the October 2022 floods, with flows from the Loddon River cutting off Murrabit West and Benjeroop.

In the fourth of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, retired school principal, Neil Hopkins talks about how residents united during flood preparation efforts and how they are continuing to support each other during the recovery process.


Koondrook

The October-December 2022 floods were the first major flood event to impact Koondrook since 1975.

In the fifth of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, community leader, Bryan Goble and his son, Nathan talk about how the community looked to its leaders and emergency service personnel for guidance to prepare for increased flows from the Murray River and Gunbower Creek.


Cohuna

The Gannawarra's young people played a key role in assisting residents impacted by the October-December 2022 floods.

In the sixth of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, Cohuna Secondary College students and staff talk about how they were impacted by the floods and the role they played in supporting the community.

Quambatook

Knowledge and preparedness is important during flood events, with flood wardens located across the Gannawarra Shire playing a pivotal role.

In the final of the Gannawarra Reflections videos produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, local flood warden, Leo Parker talks about how Quambatook prepared for flooding along the Avoca River during October 2022, as well as how work undertaken after the 2011 floods protected the town 11 years later.


One Year On

Twelve months after the October-December 2022 floods, communities across the Gannawarra are at different stages of the recovery process.

The Gannawarra Reflections - One Year On video, produced by Council and Northern District Community Health, features people who appeared in the original seven-video Gannawarra Reflections series, who all provide an update on how they and their communities are managing.

 

Inquiry into insurers' response to 2022 major flood claims

Following a reference from the House of Representatives on 7 August 2023, the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Economics commenced an inquiry into insurers’ responses to 2022 major floods claims, including for the October-December 2022 floods that impacted the Gannawarra Shire.

To assist the committee develop a report that will be presented to Parliament by 30 September 2024, residents are encouraged to complete a 10-minute survey outlining their experiences or to develop a submission.

For more information regarding the inquiry, including how to complete the survey or develop a submission, please click here.

Gannawarra Flood Reflections Exhibition

Thank you to all who submitted photographs, drone footage, digital media, art, poetry and stories inspired by the October-December 2022 floods for consideration to feature in the Gannawarra Flood Reflections Exhibition.

To premiere at Kerang’s Sir John Gorton Library before travelling to other towns and districts across the Gannawarra, the 100-piece exhibition forms part of the Gannawarra One-Year-On Flood Reflections program.

Details regarding the exhibition will be announced at a later date.

If you have any questions, please phone Council’s Flood Recovery Team on (03) 5450 9333 or email communityrecovery@gsc.vic.gov.au