Hume dam release plan caused flood concern

Date: 2021-09-27 04:30:00

A strengthening Bureau of Meteorology forecast of between 50 and 100mm of rain starting
mid-next week has prompted the Murray-Darling Basin Authority to increase releases from
Hume Dam to create more airspace.

Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) acting chief executive Andrew Reynolds said releases would be stepped up ahead of what is expected to be a sustained wet-weather event spanning several days from next Wednesday.

“These airspace releases are expected to remain in-channel over the weekend, however, this
is subject to change as information about this weather system improves and our river
operators make adjustments accordingly,” Mr Reynolds said.

Above-average rainfall is expected in the upper Murray catchment in late September and
October and there is an increased chance of flooding, particularly on the floodplains between
Hume Dam and Yarrawonga Weir.

The MDBA is working closely with the Bureau of Meteorology, Water NSW and the NSW and
Victorian State Emergency Services to provide flood preparedness safety messages.

Mr Reynolds said the basin authority’s aim was to share important information with people who either live, work or holiday on a floodplain.

“There are some things people need to know about when it comes to being prepared for potential floods,” Mr Reynolds said.

“There are three things you can do to be prepared.

“The first is to develop your personalised flood emergency plan for your home and property by going to the State Emergency Service website for your state.”

The site details are www.ses.nsw.gov.au and www.ses.vic.gov.au/plan-and-stay-safe

“People should also sign up, or check their details are up to date, for Water NSW’s Early Warning Network to be notified by SMS, email or landline about dam and supply activities during periods of flooding or high releases.”

You can achieve this at www.waternsw.com.au/supply/ewn

“And, finally, check the Bureau of Meteorology to receive the latest weather information including warnings, river conditions and rainfall in your area,” Mr Reynolds said.

Those details are www.bom.gov.au/australia/warnings and www.bom.gov.au/australia/flood

Hume Dam’s primary purpose is water security, it plays a crucial role in managing flows
and securing water along the Murray River, including to Adelaide.

The MDBA needs to fill Hume Dam before irrigation demands start to exceed inflows, and
the level starts to drop. This ensures water allocations are maximised.

The MDBA operates the Hume Dam in accordance with the rules set by state governments.

When the dam fills, all flood waters will pass through the dam and head downstream along
with the water entering from the tributaries such as the Kiewa River.

The Bureau of Meteorology is responsible for issuing flood warnings to the public.

Check www.bom.gov.au/australia/warnings for up-to-date flood warnings in your area.


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