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Date: Contact: Phone:
23 JUN 2016 DPFEM Media and Communications 03 6173 2424


Floodwaters Advice

The State Emergency Service is reminding the public of the dangers of floodwaters, following the recent floods that devastated parts of the State.

Acting SES Director, Nick Wilson said that entering flood waters is a dangerous activity and people purposefully entering flood waters is the leading cause of death during flood events.

“The dangers with floodwaters are those you can’t see; roads that seem to have very little depth or a slow flow could be hiding a washed out bridge or drain, and other hidden dangers include sharp objects under the surface, washed away road surfaces and sink holes.

“Floodwater can also contain faecal matter from overflowing sewage systems, agricultural run-off and chemicals from industrial areas, meaning wading in floodwaters can also expose people to infection and illness,” he said.

The SES is also warning of the unknown dangers of shallow water.

“People don’t realise how powerful water can be. It takes as little as 150mm of fast flowing water to wash a person off their feet. Water is heavy and later model vehicles are airtight. A small vehicle can be floated in as little as 300mm of water and a large vehicle can completely float away in 600mm,” Mr Wilson said.

The SES has units on standby across the State for the next couple of days due to predicted high rainfall and strong winds forecast in the North East and high rainfall in the North West.

“I urge all Tasmanians to watch for warnings issued by the Bureau of Meteorology, and remain vigilant in both severe weather and when working in or near previous flood sites,” Mr Wilson said.

Fast facts:

  • Each cubic metre of water weighs about 1000kg
  • It takes 150mm of fast flowing water to wash a person of their feet
  • It takes 200mm of fast flowing water to move a small car
  • It takes 600mm of fast flowing water to move most other vehicles

For current road closures check Link to External Site.



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