Rainfall dampens fire grounds and returns flow to the rivers around Gloucester

About 6pm Saturday at Rocky Crossing on Barrington River. Photo supplied
About 6pm Saturday at Rocky Crossing on Barrington River. Photo supplied

With Carey's Peak, one of Barrington Tops National Park's highest points, recording more than 100 millimetres of rain across the weekend, residents have started to see some movement in the dried up rivers in the region.

It was a welcome sight for Gloucester residents who have been struggling with the worst dry spell in living memory. The rain started to fall on Thursday (January 16), with some locations in the region receiving a decent dump of rain, and continued until Sunday (January 19) with some areas recording up to 150 millimetres of rain in that time.

Thankfully the rain fell in some very important places, like the fire grounds north west of Gloucester.

According to Stuart Robb from the NSW Rural Fire Service, the rainfall was enough to downgrade the status for the fire in Woko National Park (Ridge 400) and Giro (Rumba Complex) to patrol.

"Some good rainfall of 50 to 150mm has impacted the fire grounds, reducing the risk significantly," Mr Robb said.

Water was flowing over Rocky Crossing on Saturday afternoon as a result of the recent rainfall. Photo supplied.

Water was flowing over Rocky Crossing on Saturday afternoon as a result of the recent rainfall. Photo supplied.

It appears the hot, dry weather has broken and is returning to the typical January weather pattern, according to Mr Robb. Although there has been rain, the NSW RFS urge residents to remain vigilant as we are still in the middle of the fire season.

The rainfall has almost made an impact in the catchment areas and the state of the water in the MidCoast Council region.

Council's director of infrastructure and engineering services, Rob Scott is very pleased to see the water flowing again in the region's watercourses.

"Gloucester has had a small river rise and we are looking to recommence our water treatment plant and pumping from the river," Mr Scott said.

While this is good news for Gloucester residents, not all areas in the region received the same large volume of rainfall. "The Karuah River at Stroud hasn't seen the same increase in flow as the other sources, and we will keep watching this closely," he said.

However, Bulahdelah's water storage has been refilled allowing a buffer for that water supply in case there's no further rain for a while, according to Mr Scott.

Council has reiterated that despite the rain, severe level four water restrictions will need to stay in place at this stage.

"We would like to thank everyone for the continued cooperation with water restrictions - it's essential we keep up this effort to save water, and not relax now that we've had one decent fall of rain," Mr Scott said.

To keep updated on the water situation visit www.midcoast.nsw.gov.au/waterrestrictions.