Thursday, 22 Feb 2024

After preparing for days, Echuca residents just want the flood to happen already

After preparing for days, Echuca residents just want the flood to happen already


After preparing for days, Echuca residents just want the flood to happen already

The great dividing river is now uniting border towns in apprehension, as it encroaches on their backyards and threatens their homes. The floods are here, but the forecast for the peak changes more rapidly than the currents can carry it.

On the Victorian border, Echuca is wedged on the west with the Campaspe River, which flooded last week, and the Murray on the east, which is expected to peak between Sunday and Monday.

The local GP Claire Goodman stands in her back yard. There is water everywhere and it is not receding. The house she shares with her husband, Matt, and two kids backs onto the Campaspe. They knew it would flood, but were not prepared for how fast and hard it came.

The power is gone in parts of the house, the garage roof has fallen in and there is mud throughout the foundations.

The emergency evacuation warning for Echuca has been in place for seven days now, but the town is buzzing.

Dressed in athleisure, people walk up the main street, takeaway coffees in hand. They take their dogs to look at the river, they visit neighbours and they go to the pub.

Utes full of sandbags file across town, the SES volunteers in their bright orange are everywhere and, someone points out, even the Queensland firies have made it.

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