In the midst of the stories of water damage and destruction as a result of the extreme weather events in Central Australia over Christmas it is nice to hear a good news story once in while. Certainly for the community members of Wilora this year's heavy rains were almost a non-event. Thanks to work undertaken by the Central Desert Regional Council works team, flooding of the houses in Wilora is a thing of the past.
Regional Works Manager at Ti Tree Rodney Baird explains "in 2011 several Territory Housing dwellings flooded 2 feet deep after stormwater surged into the community from the north-east." Council subsequently surveyed the area and identified that a drain installed on the east of the community would divert stormwater south into Stirling Swamp, 60km north of Ti Tree.
Council's local Indigenous works team used Council graders, loaders and tipper trucks to construct the drain, working closely with community members and traditional owners to ensure no sacred sites or other valued areas were disturbed.
The big rains this January saw water try to sweep into the community again, but it was captured and diverted by the new drain. All houses remained high and dry. Council President Adrian Dixon said "This is a great example of a local fix for a local problem. Council proudly supports its local Indigenous employees to improve the lives of local residents." Local residents David Mbitjana and Denise Dinnie said "It was so good that no water flooded into our houses this time"'. Senior Elder Rebecca Numina remarked "We could hear the water coming down but we didn't worry because the drain took it all away".
For more information please contact Glenn Marshall, Director Works on (08) 8958 9520.