Bracing for more

December 02, 2017

Bye bye water: Bargain Buys owners Tom Liu removes some water from his store.

Reader Peter Hamilton captured the approaching storm in Tatura.

Flooding. Picture: Jayde Gardiner.

Flooding in Euroa.

Emergency groups come together to manage the weather situation at the Shepparton Incident Control Centre.

Goulburn Valley braced itself for more heavy rain and thunderstorms last night.

The Bureau of Meteorology issued a severe thunderstorm warning for damaging winds and hail stones with Shepparton, Echuca, Seymour, Wangaratta, Mt Baw Baw and Mt Buller predicted to be affected.

In Shepparton, an Incident Control Centre was set up with CFA, State Emergency Services, police and Ambulance Victoria monitoring the weather.

Incident controller John Lebin, from Shepparton CFA, said there was some flash flooding yesterday which caused minor damage but nothing too serious.

‘‘All the agencies and police are handling those (situations) as they would on a day-to-day basis,’’ he said.

‘‘We’re planning for what the extended effect of this rain could be.

‘‘We’re keeping a watch on it now so if we need to respond we can respond and we can co-ordinate all the agencies.’’

Although yesterday’s rain was minor, areas across the Goulburn Valley like Shepparton, Seymour and Murchison experienced some flooding.

In the 24 hours to 5pm yesterday, the state’s highest rainfall of 73mm was recorded at Arcadia.

In Shepparton, about 20mm fell in the hours from 9am to 5pm yesterday.

Shepparton’s Bargain Buys owner Tom Liu was prepared for the rain so when the side of his store received minor flooding there was no damage to products.

Mr Liu noticed the build-up of water about 9.30am and took out the mop to clean it up.

He said it came through the roof and took about two hours to clean-up.

To reduce water damage, two sandbag pick-up areas were created at 52 Main St, Tatura, and 15 Dudley St, Shepparton.

Shepparton Search and Rescue took care of the Dudley St area and had empty hessian bags for people to use, while Tatura SES were at Main St handing out sandbags.

Shepparton Search and Rescue’s Michael D’Elia said they were working with Tatura SES to make sure everyone stayed safe.

‘‘For those people who know that they have problems when we have large amounts of rain, they can come in and grab some sandbags and do some self-preparation before hand,’’ he said.

Mr D’Elia said by doing this it was less likely people would need to call Tatura SES or Shepparton Search and Rescue.

Mr Lebin said emergency services would continue to work together on a co-ordinated response to the weather.

‘‘Because it’s a rainfall event, it’s one of these things where you’re never really sure how much rain you’re going to get or where exactly that rain is going to fall,’’ Mr Lebin said.

‘‘We are just waiting because we don’t know what’s going to happen.’’

For those people keen to sandbag their homes keep an eye on the Tatura SES and Shepparton Search and Rescue Facebook pages for sandbag collection points and times.

Please be aware these groups can only provide 25 bags a household and you must register with your driver’s licence to receive them.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews and Emergency Commissioner Craig Lapsley warned yesterday the worst was still yet to come.

For people experiencing life threatening situations phone 000.

For people experiencing flooding and non-life threatening situations phone SES on 132500.

Be prepared

During a storm the State Emergency Service advises people should:

■move vehicles under cover or away from trees;

■secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony;

■keep clear of fallen power lines;

■stay indoors if possible;

■avoid using the phone during the storm;

■if you are outside, avoid sheltering under trees;

■listen to the radio for storm updates; and

■switch off your computer and electrical appliances.

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