The impacts of fire and flood in the Eurobodalla area will be felt for a long time to come with the widespread damage leaving a list of works to be completed.
The region’s rural road network has been set back an entire decade after the combination of fires, floods and land slips.
Council’s director of infrastructure services, Warren Sharpe OAM, said the the floods in March were the sixth extreme weather event to cause damage since the Black Summer bushfires, leaving serious land slips and longitudinal cracking in sections of the road network.
“Some of these repairs are in extremely difficult terrain and especially those on the downhill side of roads which will be very challenging and time consuming to fix.
“We really feel for the people in these more remote areas of our shire as they’re now faced with serious challenges in accessing their properties, getting produce to market and being able to rebuild following the bushfires,” he said.
According to Mr Sharpe, these residents have not been forgotten and the Council has started work with Transport for NSW and Resilience NSW to develop solutions, secure funding and ultimately complete the works.
Since January 2020, $11.8 million in works has been completed however there are still areas yet to be tackled.
Mr Sharpe said Araluen Road was one of those challenges.
After a landslip about 23 kilometres west of Moruya closed the road in November, a permanent solution has not been found due to the complexity of the situation – steep terrain, proximity of the river, land tenure and instability issues.
The March flooding caused more rock and debris to block the roadway and due to the risk of further slips, it cannot simply be cleared off.
Options currently being investigated include constructing an alternate route or undertaking major reinforcement works.
Work continues to replace the 19 fire and flood damaged bridges in the Eurobodalla Shire.
Thirteen of these have already been replaced or repaired while another four have been temporarily reinstated.
Mr Sharpe said the remaining two bridges destroyed by the bushfires, Murphy Bridge and Old Bolaro Creek Bridge, were expected to commence in the second half of this year. Murphy Bridge is the largest destroyed bridge to be replaced as it crosses the main Tuross River.
To stay up to date with current works, visit the Council’s website.