No time to panic: Cowra mayor

No time to panic: Cowra mayor

THE message from Cowra mayor Bill West is for people to remain calm and use common sense as the 12,000 strong community waits to see what flows down its surrounding creeks and rivers.

The town has been the centre of national attention since reports of flooding and evacuation yesterday.

However, Cr West stressed that, at this stage, it was a waiting game and for people to remain on alert and be prepared but not to panic.

The focus is on Back Creek, several kilometres west of Cowra, although reports from local SES crews are that its level is dropping.

It’s the next 48 hours, with forecasts of more rain, that is causing worry.

“The majority of locals understand what is happening,” Cr West said.

“Back Creek is the issue now, but in a day or two days’ time it will be different. We are watching very closely what the Boorowa River does, and also how quickly Wyangala Dam is filling up.

“The Lachlan River at present is of great concern, let alone with predictions of more rain and potentially higher levels.”

There are reports the Lachlan River could reach a height of 15 metres.

In comparison, the Lachlan River peaked at 12.3 metres in December 2010.

Cr West urged shire residents to continue to use common sense while waiting to see how the flooding situation proceeded.

This was in response to reports of mass evacuation, which have since proven to be distorted.

“At this stage, I am concerned over what appears to be some confusion and the message being broadcast out, particularly with the broader media,” Cr West stressed.

“People really need to remain calm and use common sense, listen to the local and regional media. Work with varying agencies, particularly with the SES, as they are the agency in charge at this time, although that can change.

“In an emergency I would encourage the community to contact the SES on 132 500.”

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