Flooding to remain ‘for a week’; more evacuation orders are issued; man found dead in floodwaters
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Maribyrnong dam ‘would have saved’ hundreds of homes
Hundreds of Melbourne homes could have been saved from flooding in recent days if the former state Labor government had backed a push to dam the Maribyrnong River, hydrology experts say.
Hydrology and flood warning expert Geoff Crapper, who was responsible for Melbourne’s flood warning service at Melbourne Water from 1989 to 2003, lobbied the Bracks government to build the infrastructure project at Arundel ahead of the 2006 election, but it was rejected on environmental grounds.
Properties and damaged gardens left in a muddy mess after the aftermath of the flooding of the Maribyrnong River, Saturday morning.Credit:Scott McNaughton
According to a presentation by Crapper provided to the government at the time, the infrastructure project would also have eliminated the need for a controversial flood wall protecting Flemington Racecourse, and reduced the reliance on Melbourne Water’s flood warning system.
Read more in this exclusive report.
‘Good, decent country guy’: Man found dead in Rochester identified
The flooded town of Rochester is grieving the loss of well-respected man Kevin Wills, whose body was found in the backyard of his inundated home on High Street.
His long-time neighbour Ian Crouch remembered Wills, 71, was a “decent country guy”.
Kevin Wills who was found dead in the backyard of his flooded Rochester home on Saturday.Credit:Facebook
“He was always helpful and would pop around the backyard … just a good decent country guy who would help his neighbours.”
Crouch said he would sometimes share a beer with his neighbour, a former panelbeater, who was an active member of the Rochester community.
Police are preparing a report for the coroner about Wills’ death.
“Access to the scene was difficult given the surrounding floodwater, however, emergency services have been able to extract the deceased as well as a woman who was unharmed but trapped at the address,” a police spokesman said.
My name is Ashleigh McMillan and I will be helming our Victorian Floods 2022 live blog this Sunday.
People in parts of Echuca and Charlton are being told to evacuate immediately.
It’s now too late to leave the flood-affected areas of Mooroopna, Shepparton, Orrvale, and Kialla West.
While very little rain fell on Saturday, the rivers continued to swell. There were 583 properties impacted by flooding, with that number expected to increase dramatically over the coming days.
Please stay with us as we bring you the latest from around the state.
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