Danger of broken creek flooding at least 700 homes in town intensifies. "If the water breaks through here, the whole place could be a meter and a half underwater," the spokesman, stephen warren, told radio station ABC. "This could quickly put lives in danger."
Firefighters and volunteers do what they can to plug every leak. The aluminum dam that reinforces the earthen dikes was still holding on thursday, but the water pressure was so high that the straws could be spooled underneath.
Nathalia, about 230 kilometers north of melbourne, was the youngest victim of the flooding disaster that submerged an area in the southeast of the continent more than half the size of lake constance. The actual riverbeds of the lachlan and murrumbidgee were no longer visible on satellite images. The banks on both sides were five kilometers under water in places. "Here, the water is no longer just flowing in the riverbed toward the mouth, but is coming from all directions," emergency services coordinator phil campbell said on television. The town of forbes on the lachlan looked from the air like three islands in a rough sea. There the water continued to rise on thursday.
In many areas, people can't remember such masses of water. In others, the flood of 1974 is remembered, but river and creek levels are expected to exceed the record highs of that time, according to meteorologists' forecasts. Around nathalia, some 750 kilometers southwest of sydney, as much rain fell in seven days as normally falls in an entire year, according to their data. In all, thousands of people have been flooded, thousands of homes have suffered water damage, countless livestock have drowned on pastures, crops have been uprooted, and roads and bridges have been damaged.
Water accumulated further northeast due to devastating rainstorms. It flows towards the southwest. The long-threatened rough city of wagga wagga, with a population of 58,000, got off lightly. The authorities feared the worst and had called for thousands to flee. But the murrumbidgee remained a few centimeters below the eleven-meter-high top of the dike and the rough part of the city center was spared.