Lismore, Northern New South Wales is flooding for the second time in a month after major flood warnings and evacuation orders were issued earlier this morning.
Lismore’s Wilsons River overtopped the 10-metre levee at about 10am and could reach 11 metres in the coming hours according to the Bureau of Meteorology.
⚠️ #Flood Warning updated for #Lismore. The levee height (of 10.65) metres when water enters the CBD has been exceeded. See https://t.co/AdztI2rqg1 for details and updates; follow advice from @NSWSES. #NSWFloods pic.twitter.com/YHffZWqNx2
— Bureau of Meteorology, New South Wales (@BOM_NSW) March 29, 2022
Evacuation orders were issued at 3.20am for the Lismore CBD and at about 9am water started running through the streets.
— Gracie Richter (@GracieRichter) March 29, 2022
And it’s happening again. Video from my nephew near home in South Lismore. The current 11 metre prediction will likely see water close to (or in) some of these houses. Contains some coarse language (no surprises there) pic.twitter.com/K7W1uMgPxX
— James O’Brien 🏳️🌈 (@jcjobau) March 29, 2022
Residents have been urged to get out of the area immediately after the levee’s sirens failed to sound when it overtopped.
Local MP Justine Elliot posted an alert on Facebook that urged people to leave Lismore.
“HAPPENING NOW: THE LISMORE LEVEE IS OVERTOPPING,” she wrote on her Facebook page.
“NOTE: SIRENS WILL NOT SOUND – THERE IS A MALFUNCTION. You MUST get out now.”
NSW SES issued a similar urgent alert shortly after.
❗️ LISMORE LEVEE OVERTOPPING IS IMMINENT ❗️ THE SIRENS WILL NOT SOUND DUE TO MALFUNCTION. EVERYONE MUST GET OUT OF THE CBD IMMEDIATELY.
— NSW SES (@NSWSES) March 29, 2022
Lismore has only just begun to recover after its flood records were broken in February when the water level reached 14.4 metres.
8am in Nth Lismore. Over night Lismore got smashed from all sides, winds swirling around on top of us dropping rain bombs & then BANG we cop a HYBRID CYCLONE 2 finish the job. Heaps of water coming from catchment now, levels rising Not a #climateemergency #auspol #lismorefloods pic.twitter.com/jhT5t0bp6q
— Eddie Lloyd (@worldzonfire) March 29, 2022
Relief centres run by volunteers including the First Nations newspaper the Koori Mail were forced to close until further notice.
Phone and internet connectivity has been affected for a month and were taken out this morning. Telstra issued a notice that mobile phone and internet coverage and broadband internet were all down in Lismore on Wednesday morning.
Heavy rain has also caused flash flooding in Byron Bay. Footage has emerged of flooded streets in the centre of town.
— Josephine Shannon (@Josie_Shannon_) March 29, 2022
Some residents of the region lost everything in the February floods. A second hit so soon after is unthinkable.
Stay tuned for updates.