Operation Flood Assist 2022 – Update 17 March 2022

CAPTION: Commander of the Operation Flood Assist Joint Task Force, Lieutenant General David Thomae (right), surveys flood-affected areas in the greater Sydney region from an Army MRH-90 Taipan helicopter. Photo by Corporal Julia Whitwell.

Last updated: 8:00am Thursday, March 17, 2022. 

Defence support to Queensland and NSW governments is being delivered under Operation Flood Assist 2022 and coordinated through Headquarters Joint Operations Command.  Deployment of forces is in response to NSW Government and Queensland Government requirements coordinated and prioritised through State Emergency Operations Centres.

Personnel supporting (approximate):

Currently there are more than 7100 personnel on task or available for tasking across NSW and Queensland.

   
  • Total personnel deployed on task in Queensland: more than 1600
  • Total personnel deployed on task in New South Wales: more than 5400
    • more than 3900 in northern NSW
    • About 1500 in Sydney basin

Planned tasks for Thursday, March 17: 

  • Defence continues its efforts to support the Queensland and NSW governments across a range of search and rescue, clean up and recovery tasks.
  • Continuing liaison with SES Incident Management Teams and Emergency Operation Centres to identify and scope recovery tasks.

In Queensland:

  • ADF personnel will conduct further reconnaissance of suburbs in the Greater Brisbane River.  Clean-up activities at Kedron Brook Walkway, Zillmere, Taigum, Geebung, Oxley, Rocklea, Logan, Waterford West, Ipswich, Goodna, Bundamba.
  • Support to vulnerable person checks in the Brisbane region and Logan.
  • Plant assets will support clean-up in Waterford West.
  • HMAS Shepparton, HMAS Yarra and Clearance Diving Team Four will continue hydrographic survey and clearance of sub-surface obstructions in the Brisbane River and Moreton Bay.
  • Continue disaster relief clean-up efforts in Ipswich. Focusing on suburbs of Goodna and Bundamba; and conduct of reconnaissance and planning for the tasks at the College Crossing Recreation Reserve.

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of aviation and ground support to northern NSW, including Lismore, Evans Head, Stotts Creek, Murrwillumbah, Mullumbimby, Tweed Heads, Chinderah, Bryon Bay, Ocean Shores, Ballina, Casino, Coffs Harbour, Tumbulgum including heavy plant operations in Lismore and Tweed Heads.
  • Conduct aeriel food stores delivery, support to VIP flights and aerial reconnaissance in support of priority information requirements in the vicinity of Grafton and Lismore.
  • Fijian force will commence operations in Northern NSW.
  • Increased presence in Lismore to support operations, welfare checks.  Continue engagement with Lismore council and law enforcement to inform priorities.
  • Continue to maintain key links with community engagement within Evans Head. Role 1 Medical capability in Evans Head will be established.
  • Continue engagement with Tweed and Byron Bay Shire officials to understand council recovery plans and requirements.
  • Conduct damage assessments in Hinton area.
  • Ground, sea and air support to Sydney Basin in support of Emergency Operations Centres as follows:
    • Ground teams to support RFS route clearance activities at St Albans, Sydney.
    • Deploy amphibious elements to Wisemans Ferry to work with NSW RFS in order to assist sustainment of isolated communities.
    • Posture to support clean up in Wisemans Ferry and Sackville, Sydney.
    • Unmanned Aerial Systems reconnaissance support to Freemans Reach, North of Windsor Bridge.
    • Welfare checks on isolated personnel within Upper Colo.
    • Conduct house to curb clean up in support of vulnerable persons in Lower MacDonald, Sydney.

On Wednesday, March 16: 

In Queensland:

  • ADF personnel conducted further reconnaissance of suburbs in the Greater Brisbane River.  Clean-up activities at Kedron Brook Walkway, Zillmere, Taigum, Geebung, Oxley, Rocklea, Logan, Waterford West, Ipswich, Goodna, Bundamba.

  • Vulnerable person checks in the Brisbane region and Logan.
  • Supported Brisbane City Council’s curbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • HMAS Shepparton, HMAS Yarra and Clearance Diving Team Four continued hydrographic survey and clearance of sub-surface obstructions in the Brisbane River and Moreton Bay.
  • Disaster relief clean-up efforts continued in Ipswich. Focused on suburbs of Goodna and Bundamba; and conducted reconnaissance and planning for the tasks at the College Crossing Recreation Reserve.

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of aviation and ground support to northern NSW, including Lismore, Evans Head, Stotts Creek, Murrwillumbah, Mullumbimby, Tweed Heads, Chinderah, Bryon Bay, Ocean Shores, Ballina, Casino, Coffs Harbour, including heavy plant operations in Lismore and Tweed Heads.
  • Two helicopter missions flown: 2x CH-47 aircraft transferred personnel and supplied from Lismore and Casino to Woodenbong, Bonalbo, Malabugilmah; and an AW-139 aircraft conducted reconnaissance and community engagement in Byrrill Creek area (Tweed Shire).
  • Clean-up tasks in vicinity of Upper Main Arm and Huonbrook, NSW (North West of Byron Bay).
  • Welfare checks in vicinity of Federal and Eureka, NSW (West of Byron Bay).
  • Continued plant operations and welfare checks in isolated townships such as Coraki, Woodburn and Broadwater.
  • Continued support to telecommunication companies (including Woodburn NBN Hub) to restore communication services.
  • Helicopter and plant assets reinforced route access to isolated communities in Upper Wilsons Creek region.
  • Continue reconnaissance tasks and support tasks alongside emergency services in Sydney Basin:
  • General duties and clean-up tasks to assist vulnerable persons as assessed by the Hawkesbury Council. House-to-curb removal of debris specifically in Portland, Lower McDonald and Wilberforce.
  • Ground, sea and air reconnaissance across the Sydney Basin in support of Emergency Ops Centres:
    • Damage assessments and reconnaissance in Camden, Picton, Pitt Town, the Australian Pioneer Village, Wisemans Ferry, St Albans and Sackville, which will inform future planning.
    • Blue Mountain Rail Survey identified one sinkhole, which will be repaired by State Authorities.
      • Continue deployment of ground reconnaissance teams with unmanned aerial systems to conduct railway assessments in vicinity of Katoomba in the Blue Mountains.
      • Deploy amphibious elements to Wisemans Ferry to work with NSW Rural Fire Service (RFS) in order to provide sustainment to isolated communities.
      • Ground teams supported RFS route clearance activities at St Albans, Sydney.
      • Unmanned aerial systems reconnaissance support to Freemans Reach, North of Windsor Bridge.
      • Ground reconnaissance teams conducted welfare checks on isolated personnel within Upper Colo, who have requested assistance from the Emergency Operations Centre.
      • Conducted house to curb clean up in support of vulnerable persons in Lower MacDonald, Sydney.
      • Prepared for residential and local infrastructure house to curb clean up tasks of communities in the vicinity of Wisemans Ferry and Sackville, Sydney.

On Tuesday, March 15: 

In Queensland:

  • Continuation of disaster relief clean-up efforts in Bundamba, Goodna, Graceville, Ipswich, Logan, Oxley and St Lucia, including support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • HMAS Shepparton, HMAS Yarra and Clearance Diving Team Four to continue hydrographic survey and clearance of sub-surface obstructions in the Brisbane River and Moreton Bay.
  • Reconnaissance and planning for tasks beyond the Ipswich area.
  • Reconnaissance of suburbs in the greater Brisbane River area.
  • An engineer element continued work at Rocklea Cold Storage & Distribution facility.

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of aviation and ground support to northern NSW, including Lismore, Evans Head, Stotts Creek, Murrwillumbah, Mullumbimby, Tweed Heads, Chinderah, Bryon Bay, Ocean Shores, Ballina, Casino, Coffs Harbour, including heavy plant operations in Lismore and Tweed Heads.
  • Continued plant operations and welfare checks in isolated townships such as Coraki, Woodburn and Broadwater.
  • Key support in Lismore: welfare checks of vulnernable people, support to garbage collection, debris removal at Lismore Public School and Richmond River High School, delivery of Singapore Government-donated relief stores.
  • Debris removal and works on key government infrastructure and schools along the Bruxner Highway, Wyrallah Road and Ballina Road.
  • Assistance to the Blakebrook, Rapville and Leville schools, and inserted a liaison officer team within the Casino Council.
  • Helicopter and plant machine assets reinforced route access to isolated communities in Upper Wilsons Creek region.
  • Welfare checks conducted for vulnerable peo
  • ADF personnel supported to Cessnock and Spencer in road clearance operations.
  • Recovery operations along Nimbin temporary water pipeline.
  • Continued support to telecommunications companies restoring communications services.
  • House clearance recovery operations in Cabbage Tree Island.
  • Assisted NSW SES transfer supplies to Hinton for further operations.
  • Coordinated helicopter support to town mayors to reach isolated communities for critical community engagement.
  • Continue reconnaissance tasks and support tasks alongside emergency services in Sydney basin.
  • In conjunction with the NSW Rural Fire Service, conducted a visit and assessment of isolated communities in vicinity of Wisemans Ferry. This visit identified areas to establish a logistics dump of fresh water and fuel which will sustain the local communities’ generators until road access and re-supply can be re-established.
  • Ground and sea reconnaissance in support of Windsor Emergency Operations Centre with a focus on:
    • Areas east of the Hawkesbury River – identifying where flood water has receded within Wilberforce, Lower Portland, Lower McDonald. Damage assessments to inform future planning for Hawkesbury, Windsor North to Wisemans Ferry area.

On Monday, March 14: 

In Queensland:

  • Continued disaster relief clean-up efforts in Bundamba, Goodna, Graceville, Ipswich, Logan, Oxley and St Lucia, including support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • HMAS Shepparton, HMAS Yarra and Clearance Diving Team Four continued hydrographic survey and clearance of sub-surface obstructions in the Brisbane River and Moreton Bay.
  • Reconnaissance and planning for tasks beyond the Ipswich area.
  • Reconnaissance of suburbs in the greater Brisbane River.
  • The engineer element will continue work at Rocklea Cold Storage & Distribution facility.

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of aviation and ground support to northern NSW, including Lismore, Broadwater, Cabbage Tree Island, Coraki, Evans Head, Wallum and Woodburn.
  • Continuation of support in Lismore includes: completed house-to-curb rubbish removal, delivery of 35 care packages to Lismore Base Hospital.
  • Supported isolated communities in Tweed Shire Council area through welfare checks and route reconnaissance.
  • Integrated ADF liaison officers into recovery coordination centres across affected regions, including Richmond Valley Council in Casino.
  • Debris removal and works on key government infrastructure and schools along the Bruxner Highway, Wyrallah Road and Ballina Road.
  • Provided assistance clearing flood damage to Blakebrook, Rappville and Leeville schools in northern NSW.
  • ADF personnel worked alongside NSW SES volunteers to support road clearing, clean up and rapid damage assessment in vicinity of Spencer.
  • Recovery operations along Nimbin temporary water pipeline.
  • Continuation of ADF and NSW SES railway line assessments in northern NSW.
  • Continued support to telecommunications companies restoring communications services.
  • Conduct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance of flood-damaged regions.

On Sunday, March 13: 

In Queensland:

  • Continuation of disaster relief clean-up efforts in Bundamba, Goodna, Ipswich, Gattan, Grantham, Rocklea, Milton, St Lucia, including support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • Support in the Gympie region concluded with ADF personnel returning to Gallipoli Barracks for further tasks.
  • Helicopter operations were conducted in support of NNSW including the transport of the Singaporean disaster relief stores.
  • HMAS Shepparton, HMAS Yarra and Clearance Diving Team Four continued hydrographic survey and clearance of sub-surface obstructions in the Brisbane River and Moreton Bay including the following ferry terminals: Eleanor Schonell Bridge, Guyatt, Milton, Regatta, University of Southern Queensland, St Lucia and West End.
  • Continuation of liaison with Queensland state and local authorities to identify and scope recovery tasks.
  • Further reconnaissance of greater Brisbane River suburbs to identify future tasks in accordance with Brisbane City Council priority list.
  • 10 ADF and Singaporean helicopters based at Oakey to support south-eastern Queensland and northern NSW with taskings, including search and rescue, aerial reconnaissance, food and stores distribution, patient transfer and logistics support: 4x Army MRH-90 Taipan, 2x Army CH-47F Chinook, 2x AW-139, and 2x CH-47F Chinook helicopters from the Republic of Singapore Air Force.

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of aviation and ground support to northern NSW, including Evans Head, Stotts Creek, Lismore, Murrwillumbah, Mullumbimby, Tweed Heads, Chinderah, Bryon Bay, Ocean Shores, Ballina, Casino, Coffs Harbour, including heavy plant operations in Lismore and Tweed Heads.
  • Continuation of embedding ADF personnel with NSW State Emergency Service (SES) and Rural Fire Services recovery centres.
  • Continuation of clean-up of flood debris from Lismore Primary School and Richmond River High School.
  • Continuation of heavy plant operations in Lismore and Tweed Heads.
  • 150 tonnes of debris removed from Bruxner Highway and Wyrallah road, facilitating access to schools and key government infrastructure.
  • Continuation of reconnaissance along Nimbin water pipeline.
  • Assisted NSW SES transfer supplies to Hinton for further operations.
  • Delivered remainder of Singapore Government-donated disaster relief supplies from RAAF Base Amberley to Lismore.
  • Received and established Air Force field kitchen in northern NSW.
  • Prepared to establish a Role 1 medical capability at Evans Head.
  • Continued intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance of flood-damaged regions in northern NSW and P-8A Poseidon aerial reconnaissance of northern NSW and Hunter region.
  • Supported Cessnock road clearance operations.
  • Clean-up and general duties support to SES elements in Wisemans Ferry.
  • Coordinated ADF helicopter support with town mayors to ensure isolated communities are engaged, including welfare checks and the transport of food and water.
  • Food loading at food distribution points as required.
  • Seven ADF helicopters providing reconnaissance and support in NSW, based at HMAS Albatross (2x MH-60R Seahawks, 1x AW-139), RAAF Base Williamtown (1x AW-139) and Holsworthy Barracks (3x Army MRH-90 Taipans). Aerial reconnaissance teams focused on Kurrajong, Kurmond Freemans Reach and Wilberforce.

On Saturday, March 12:

In Queensland:

  • Continued clean-up efforts in Gatton, Grantham, Milton, St Lucia and Rocklea. Including support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • Conducted welfare checks with vulnerable persons at the request of Brisbane City Council.
  • HMAS Shepparton and Clearance Diving Team Four continued surveying and assisting to clear Brisbane River and Moreton Bay of submerged obstacles.
  • ADF and Republic of Singapore Air Force helicopters transported Singapore Government-donated disaster relief supplies from RAAF Base Amberley to Lismore.
  • Continued liaison with Queensland state and local authorities to identify and scope recovery tasks.

In New South Wales:

  • Continued clean-up efforts in towns across northern NSW, including Lismore, Ballina, Broadwater, Cabbage Tree Island, Coffs Harbour, Evans Head, Grafton, Murwillumbah, Tweed Heads, Wallum, Wardell and Woodburn. Additional ADF personnel transported to isolated townships such as Broadwater, Coraki and Woodburn.
  • Accepted and began delivering initial Singapore Government-donated disaster relief supplies in Lismore.
  • Supported contracted garbage collection in South Lismore, where more around 400 tonnes of rubbish has been removed to date.
  • Plant operations and welfare checks continued in Broadwater, Coraki and Woodburn.
  • Conducted railway line assessments with SES volunteers in northern NSW.
  • Several helicopter missions were conducted across NSW, including reconnaissance in the Sydney basin area.
  • ADF personnel deployed to areas in Sydney’s north-west, including Bligh Park, Windsor and Wisemans Ferry.
  • Defence establishments in Sydney basin reached out to identify opportunities to support local councils and emergency services.
  • Continued ADF build up in Singleton to be ready for tasking from Monday, March 14.
  • Continued engineering reconnaissance in Nimbin to return water services to local community.
  • Continued Bruxner Highway debris removal to schools and key government infrastructure.
  • Continued to support telecommunication companies in restoring communication services.
  • Continued support to Evans Head evacuation centres.

On Friday, March 11:

In Queensland:

  • Continued clean-up efforts in Bundamba, Gatton, Goodna, Grantham, Gympie, Ipswich, Milton, St Lucia and Rocklea. Including support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • HMAS Shepparton, HMAS Yarra and Clearance Diving Team Four continued surveying and assisting to clear Brisbane River and Moreton Bay of submerged obstacles.
  • Continued liaison with Queensland state and local authorities to identify and scope recovery tasks.

In New South Wales:

  • Continued clean-up efforts in towns across northern NSW, including Lismore, Cabbage Tree Island, Coffs Harbour, Evans Head, Grafton, Murwillumbah, Tweed Heads, Wallum and Woodburn. Additional ADF personnel transported to isolated townships such as Broadwater, Coraki and Woodburn.
  • Commenced tasks in support of SES and local community in Ballina, Broadwater, Wardell and Woodburn.
  • Plant operations and welfare checks continued in Broadwater, Coraki and Woodburn.
  • ADF presence in Casino consolidated.
  • 100-person camp established at Lismore to support Defence personnel conducted ongoing operations.
  • Conducted intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance surveillance of flood-damaged regions.
  • Several helicopter missions were conducted across northern NSW.
  • Defence establishments in Sydney basin reached out to identify opportunities to support local councils and emergency services.
  • P-8A Poseidon aerial reconnaissance of flood in northern NSW and Hunter regions.
  • Established ADF presence in Singleton to be ready for tasking from Monday, March 14.
  • Engineering reconnaissance in Nimbin to return water services to local community.
  • Work across Bruxner Highway focusing on schools and key government infrastructure has removed more than 125 tonnes of debris to-date.
  • Continued to support telecommunication companies in restoring communication services.
  • Assistance to evacuation centres in Evans Head.

On Thursday, March 10:

In Queensland:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in Gympie, Gatton, Grantham, St Lucia, Milton, Rocklea, Ipswich, Bundamba and Goodna. Including support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • Royal Australian Navy vessel HMAS Shepparton and Clearance Diving Team Four continued surveying and assisting to clear Brisbane River and Moreton Bay of submerged obstacles.
  • Continued liaison with Queensland state and local authorities to identify and scope recovery tasks.
  • Nine helicopters were based out of Oakey to support south-eastern Queensland and northern NSW with taskings including search and rescue, aerial reconnaissance, food and stores distribution, patient transfer and logistics support (4x MRH-90, 2x Army Chinook CH-47F, 2x AW-139. 1x Chinook CH-47F from Singapore Armed Forces).

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in towns across northern NSW, including Lismore, Coffs Harbour, Grafton, Murwillumbah, Tweed Heads, Ballina.  Additional ADF personnel in isolated townships such as Coraki, Woodburn and Broadwater.
  • Limited helicopter operations continued in support of northern NSW, due to severe weather.
  • ADF presence in Casino consolidated.
  • Planning underway for 500 personnel camp construction to commence in vicinity of Lismore.
  • Conduct intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance surveillance of flood-damaged regions.
  • Five helicopter missions were conducted, undertaking tasks such as reconnaissance and passenger transfer.
  • Defence establishments in Sydney basin reached out to identify opportunities to support local councils and emergency services.
  • P-8A Aerial reconnaissance of flood in Sydney Basin Area.
  • Continued to support telecommunication companies in restoring communication services.
  • Assistance to evacuation centres in Evans Head.

On Wednesday, March 9:

In Queensland:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in Queensland:in Gympie, Gatton, St Lucia, Fairfield, Graceville, Rocklea, Gatton, Grantham and Goodna.
  • ADF footprint was expanded on the ground to meet the needs of more communities.
  • Support to the Brisbane City Council kerbside rubbish collection efforts.
  • Royal Australian Navy vessel HMAS Shepparton and Clearance Diving Team Four continued surveying and assisting to clear Brisbane River and Moreton Bay of submerged obstacles.
  • ADF personnel continued to support Queensland State Emergency Service (SES).
  • Defence personnel continued to be embedded in the State Disaster Coordination Centre (SDCC) and the District Disaster Coordination Cells (DDCC) at Gympie, Gold Coast and Ipswich, as well as Brisbane Local Disaster Coordination Cell.
  • Nine helicopters were based out of Oakey to support south-eastern Queensland and northern NSW with taskings including search and rescue, aerial reconnaissance, food and stores distribution, patient transfer and logistics support (4x MRH-90, 2x Army Chinook CH-47F, 2x AW-139. 1x Chinook CH-47F from Singapore Armed Forces).

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in towns across northern NSW, including Lismore, Cabbage Tree Island, Coffs Harbour, Grafton, Murwillumbah, Port Macquarie, Tweed Heads–Byron Bay, Wallum and Woodburn.
  • ADF heavy plant equipment operations continued in Lismore.
  • Limited helicopter operations continued in support of Northern NSW, due to pending severe weather.
  • ADF personnel continued to support NSW SES aviation food and water-drop operations to isolated housing and communities.
  • Conducted intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance surveillance of flood-damaged regions.
  • ADF personnel continued to assist with reconnaissance and food distribution in areas south of Casino.
  • P-8 Poseidon aerial reconnaissance of flood Sydney Basin Area.
  • Members from the ADF Dive School yesterday rescued a sinking small boat which would have become a navigational hazard in Sydney Harbour.
  • An MRH-90 helicopter conducted reconnaissance of the Sydney basin, focusing on Camden, Nepean Valley, Penrith, Richmond/Windsor and Chipping North areas.
  • Six littoral flood assessment teams conducted proactive reconnaissance/survey of the Hawkesbury River from Mooney Mooney Bridge.
  • Two Navy MH-60R Seahawk helicopters and one commercially contracted AW-139 helicopter are located at HMAS Albatross in Nowra for search and rescue operations in day and night conditions in the greater Sydney and the South Coast region.

On Tuesday, March 8:

In Queensland:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in Amberley, Ashgrove, Bundamba, Burpengary, Chelmer, Esk, Fairfield, Gatton, Goodna, Graceville, Grantham, Gympie, Redcliffe, Rocklea, St Lucia and Rocklea.
  • ADF personnel supported Queensland SES aviation food and water-drop operations to isolated housing and communities.
  • Defence began conducting a hydrographic survey, and mind clearance vessel to detect underwater obstructions in the Port of Brisbane and Brisbane River. This included the provision of clearance divers and two hydrographic survey vessels.
  • Nine helicopters were based out of Oakey to support south-eastern Queensland and northern NSW with taskings including search and rescue, aerial reconnaissance, food and stores distribution, patient transfer and logistics support (4x MRH-90, 2x Army Chinook CH-47F, 2x AW-139. 1x Chinook CH-47F from Singapore Armed Forces).

In New South Wales:

  • Continued clean-up efforts in 14 towns in northern NSW, including Lismore, Port Macquarie, Grafton, Tweed Heads, Crabbes Creek, Ocean Shores and Chinderah.
  • Australian Army and Singapore Armed Forces CH-47F Chinook helicopters airlifted ADF personnel from Brisbane to several northern NSW towns, including Broadwater, Coraki and Woodburn.
  • ADF personnel supported New South Wales SES aviation food and water-drop operations to isolated housing and communities.
  • ADF personnel continued to support Telstra in restoring communication services in Grafton.
  • ADF personnel provided assistance to Evans Head evacuation centres.

On Monday, March 7:

In Queensland:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in Bundamba, Esk, Fairfield, Gatton, Goodna, Graceville, Grantham, Gympie, Rocklea, St Lucia and Rocklea.
  • ADF personnel began clean-up efforts in Amberley, Ashgrove, Burpengary, Chelmer and Redcliffe.
  • ADF personnel supported Queensland SES aviation food and water-drop operations to isolated housing and communities.
  • Eight helicopters were based out of Oakey to support south-eastern Queensland and northern NSW with taskings including search and rescue, aerial reconnaissance, food and stores distribution, patient transfer and logistics support (4x MRH-90, 2x Army Chinook CH-47F, 2x AW-139).

In New South Wales:

  • Continued clean-up efforts in 14 towns in northern NSW, including Lismore, Port Macquarie, Grafton, Tweed Heads, Crabbes Creek, Ocean Shores and Chinderah.
  • ADF personnel provided food, water and conducted supply drops in isolated communities including Cawonga, Grafton, Lawrence, Lismore, Maclean, Tumbulgum, Wardall and Woodburn.
  • Australian Army and Singapore Armed Forces CH-47F Chinook helicopters airlifted ADF personnel from Brisbane to several northern NSW towns, including Broadwater, Burwood and Coraki.
  • ADF personnel supported New South Wales SES aviation food and water-drop operations to isolated housing and communities.
  • ADF personnel assisted with food distribution in Casino.
  • ADF personnel continued to support Telstra in restoring communication services in Grafton.
  • ADF personnel conducted welfare checks and debris clearance at Murwillumbah, and welfare checks to Upper Wilson’s Creek, Main Arm and Repentance Creek.
  • MRH-90 Taipan helicopters conducted food distribution in Lismore and Woodburn, and other flood assistance tasks in Mullumbimby before returning to Oakey due to severe weather.

On Sunday, March 6:

​​​​​​In Queensland:

  • ADF personnel continued clean-up efforts in Gympie, Gatton, St Lucia, Fairfield, Graceville, Rocklea, Esk, Gatton, Grantham and Goodna.
  • Defence personnel are embedded in the State Disaster Coordination Centre (SDCC) and the District Disaster Coordination Cells (DDCC) at Gympie, Gold Coast and Ipswich, as well as Brisbane Local Disaster Coordination Cell.

In New South Wales:

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in Lismore, Port Macquarie, Grafton, Tweed Heads, Crabbes Creek, Ocean Shores and Chinderah.
  • An ADF MRH-90 Taipan helicopter conducted food distribution in the Lismore region and ADF personnel picked-up and delivered baby formula to Lismore regional areas.
  • ADF personnel conducted welfare checks and debris clearance at Main Arm, Murwillumbah, Repentance Creek and Upper Wilson’s Creek.
  • ADF personnel assisted with food distribution in Casino.
  • ADF personnel continued to support Telstra in restoring communication services in Grafton.
  • Contracted heavy plant equipment arrived in Lismore to support ADF clean-up operations.

On Saturday, March 5: 

  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in NSW: Lismore, Port Macquarie, Grafton, Tweed Heads, Crabbes Creek, Ocean Shores and Chinderah.
  • Conducted extensive route clearance and reconnaissance operations in vicinity of Lismore, Woodburn, Nimbin, Kyogle.
  • Continuation of clean-up efforts in Queensland: Gympie, Gatton, St Lucia, Fairfield, Graceville, Rocklea, Esk, Gatton, Grantham and Goodna.
  • ADF personnel conducted food drops to isolated communities including Mullumbimby, Murwillumbah, Crabbes Creek, Ocean Shores, Wardell, Kyogle, Nimbin, Bonalbo, Urbenville, Woddenbong, Tuntable, Tabulam, Tumbulgum, Corakai and Woodburn.
  • Operated a helicopter landing zone at the Casino food distribution point and a reception party for medical evacuations.
  • ADF personnel distributed baby formula to Kyogle and bottled water to Tumbulgum.
  • Aviation support to south-east Queensland, northern NSW, and Sydney region including for search and rescue, medical evacuations and logistics support as required.
  • ADF supported NSW Police access to Grafton.
  • ADF assisted Telstra in restoration of critical communications infrastructure in Grafton.
  • Continued to transport logistics from Sydney into regional logistics hubs to support recovery.
  • Further moving reinforcements into Northern NSW including heavy plant, logistics, liaison officers and clean up personnel.

On Friday, March 4:

  • Defence continued its efforts in to support the Queensland and NSW governments across a range of clean up and recovery tasks.
  • Defence’s MRH-90 helicopters conducted tasks including evacuations, food distribution and transportation in Mullumbimby, Ballina, Casino, Coraki, Nimbin.
  • Additional plant equipment requested in Lismore.

On Thursday, March 3:

In Queensland:

  • 230 personnel commenced movements into Brisbane, Ipswich, Toowoomba and the Lockyer Valley region today to support local authorities.

In New South Wales:

  • An additional 100 personnel from 1st Armoured Regiment in South Australia were deploying to the Coffs Harbour area. Personnel to remain postured to move further north to flood affected areas as flood waters recede and roads open.
  • Additional 5th Brigade emergency support force elements were deploying north to Grafton to remain postured to move further north once roads are opened and proved.
  • An ADF rescue team has deployed to Ballina with a 40M heavy duty truck to assist with ongoing evacuation tasks.
  • ADF continue to undertake search and rescue tasks in Tweed Heads and have delivered medical supplies to local SES.
  • Helicopter crews conducted seven missions across the region including the rescue people, including:
    • A Navy MH-60R Seahawk conducted a rescue of a woman and her two children from their flooded home in Werrington in Sydney’s west.
  • ADF personnel continue to ferry evacuees from the flood-hit area of Ulmarra, near Grafton.
  • ADF Liaison staff are now embedded within the State Emergency Operations Centre (SEOC) Homebush, SES HQ in Wollongong, Fire & Rescue New South Wales and Rural Fire Services.
  • Heavy and medium plant equipment was being postured to support recovery and clean-up activities when required by emergency management agencies. Deployment to likely required areas is currently being affected by the floods. Examples of plant equipment may include front end loaders, backhoes and excavators.

On Wednesday, March 2:

In Queensland:

  • An additional 550 personnel (approximate) were conducting preparation for tasking.
  • Defence adjusted its posture in response to the situation in northern NSW, and Bell 412 commercially-contracted helicopters from Oakey are now supporting the Brisbane basin.

In New South Wales:

  • Defence increased its support to NSW search and rescue efforts with four MRH-90 Taipan helicopters and one AW-139 helicopter.
  • Defence deployed an air-liaison team into the SES location in Wollongong.
  • Approximately 70 ADF personnel from Army’s 5th Brigade are undertaking a range of tasks in support of emergency services in Lismore, Coffs Harbour, Tweed Heads, Grafton and Murwillumbah, including sandbagging and evacuation support.
  • Helicopter crews conducted 11 missions across the region including the critical relocation of seven renal patients, transport of medical stores, equipment and food distribution.

On Tuesday, March 1:

In Queensland:

  • 25 Defence personnel were undertaking flood-relief tasks in Brisbane, with additional personnel conducting preparation.
  • Defence embedded staff in the State Disaster Coordination Centre and the State Disaster Mitigation Committee at Gympie, Brisbane City, Southport and Ipswich.
  • Army’s 7th Brigade deployed liaison officers and route recon teams into heavily affected areas, including Gympie, Brisbane City, Ipswich and Coolangatta in preparation for potential requests for assistance for ADF to assist with recovery and clean-up operations.
  • Darwin’s 5th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, provided short-notice support to flood-affected aged-care facilities in Yeronga, The Gap, Lutwyche, Mitchelton and Tallebudgera.
    • Four general-duties teams of ADF personnel were deployed to assist with flood evacuation and clean-up efforts, in addition to the existing five teams already assisting aged-care facilities as part of Operation COVID-19 Assist.

In New South Wales:

  • Defence continued providing emergency support to the NSW State Emergency Service in flood-affected areas in several areas of northern NSW.
  • Air Force P-8A Poseidon aircraft providing aerial surveillance and imagery support was extended into northern NSW flood-affected regions.
  • Additional personnel were being prepared in Sydney for emergency support tasks in northern NSW, if required.
  • Defence embedded staff in the State Emergency Operations Centre (SEOC) at Homebush and SESHQ in Wollongong.
  • ADF helicopter crews conducted seven rescue missions resulting in 17 people rescued across a variety of locations in NSW including Woodburn, Dunoon, Bungawalbin, Upper Wilsons Creek, Kyogle, Swan River and Upper Main Arm.

On Monday, February 28:

  • Readying additional ADF personnel so that they can move within 24 hours’ notice to augment support efforts.
  • In accordance with Emergency Management Australia priorities, Defence was focusing delivery of ADF rotary-wing support into northern NSW region.

In Queensland:

  • Defence continued to make preparations to support the Queensland Government requirements for evacuation handling centres if needed.
  • ADF personnel deployed to aged-care facilities in the Brisbane area assisted with flood preparation including sandbagging and subsequent clean-up after flood waters had receded.
  • Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Minister for Defence visited 7th Brigade in Brisbane to receive a brief on the brigade’s capabilities, and also an update on the ADF efforts in assisting with flood relief.
  • A helicopter crew provided urgent search and rescue support in looking for a car that had been reportedly swept away down Albert River in the vicinity of Logan. The search was called off when it was confirmed that the car was unoccupied.
  • One AW139 helicopter deployed from Townsville to south-east Queensland to reinforce ADF rotary-wing effects in Queensland and northern NSW.
  • One Air Force P-8A Poseidon aircraft provided aerial surveillance and imagery of the Mary River in the Gympie and Maryborough regions, flood-affected areas of the Brisbane River, and conducted two ad-hoc surveys of catchment areas in the Sunshine Coast Airport and Caloundra Airport regions.

In New South Wales:

  • Helicopter crews conducted seven rescue missions resulting in 23 people rescued across a variety of locations, including Lismore, Ballina and Gundurimba.

On Sunday, February 27:

  • Defence provided an Air Force P-8A Poseidon aircraft from South Australia to provide aerial surveillance support to the Queensland Government about flood and damage assessments.
  • Two MRH-90 Taipan helicopters continued search and rescue operations, including winch recovery.
  • Two commercial contracted rescue helicopters in Brisbane continued to be on standby to supplement Defence capability.
  • ADF helicopter crews conducted 10 rescue missions in Queensland resulting in 19 people rescued across a wide variety of locations, including Regency Downs, Woolshed Creek and Lake Clarendon among others.
    • Aircrews responded to a property at Mount Tarampa where a family who were surrounded by water in their home was rescued.
    • Aircrew conducted a rescue winch recovery of a man in flood waters at Prenzlau, who was subsequently evacuated to RAAF Base Amberley.
  • ADF provided emergency support to the NSW State Emergency Service in flood affected areas in the Northern NSW region with help from the Army’s 5th Brigade.
    • As part of this support, approximately 70 Army Reserve soldiers from the 41st Battalion the Royal New South Wales Regiment were undertaking a range of tasks including sandbagging, door knocking and transportation.

On Saturday, February 26:

  • Defence received a request from the Queensland Government, through Emergency Management Australia, to increase its support.
    • Helicopter crews conducted eight rescue missions resulting in 28 people being rescued.
    • The rescues took place in vicinity of Regency Downs, Woolshed Creek, Clarendon, Rifle Range and Mount Tarampa in Queensland.
    • Rescue details include:
      • Aircrew responded to a property at Regency Downs, where a mother and infant along with four children, who were surrounded by water in their home, were rescued.
      • Aircrew also successfully searched for and located three missing men in a dinghy who were in difficulty after setting off to help neighbours. They were winched into the helicopter and transported safely at RAAF Base Amberley.
      • At approximately 2:45pm Queensland local time, an MRH-90 Taipan helicopter was tasked to a rescue at Lake Clarendon where a community member was stranded on the roof of a vehicle.

On Friday, February 25:

  • Following a request by Queensland Police, Defence commenced support to rescue efforts of civilians affected by the Queensland floods.
  • Australian Army MRH-90 Taipan helicopters assisted the rescue of community members trapped in flood-affected areas in south-east Queensland.
  • Helicopter crews conducted two missions resulting in two separate rescues resulting in four people being rescued. The rescues took place in vicinity of Gatton and Jimboomba (Boonah).

Defence will continue to provide additional support as requested by the Queensland and NSW governments. Defence is ready to support the states as the flood emergency and recovery efforts continue.


 
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