NSW Police and the State Emergency Service are at a loss as to what more can be said and done to get the message across about the dangers of entering flood waters.
Police and emergency services this morning recovered the bodies of two men from waterways at Leppington and Mittagong.
About 5pm (Sunday 5 June 2016), emergency services were called to Anthony Road, Leppington, after receiving information of a white utility entering a causeway and being washed away.
Police from Camden Local Area Command commenced a search of the flood affected area, with the assistance from the State Emergency Service, without success.
The man’s body was retrieved with the assistance of police divers about 11.30am.
In a separate incident at Bowral, emergency services were called to Mittagong Creek about 5.30pm yesterday (Sunday 5 June 2016), following reports a car was seen in flood waters with its hazard lights flashing.
Police from The Hume Local Area Command and the State Emergency Service conducted a search; however, they were unable to locate the vehicle.
At 8.30am today (Monday 6 June 2016), a vehicle was located in Mittagong Creek on Mittagong Road, Bowral.
Police recovered the vehicle and located the body of a 65-year-old man who is yet to be formally identified.
Acting Assistant Commissioner, Kyle Stewart, said despite the constant warnings about the dangers of entering flood areas we now have two men who have died.
“It is a tragedy these two lives have been lost. We simply do not know how either of these two men came to be in the flood waters. But what we know is that their deaths show just how dangerous flood waters are,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Stewart said.
“’What do we have to say to get the message across?”
“Emergency service personnel this morning have had the devastating task of retrieving the bodies of the men.
“Flood waters are deadly – we can’t put it any other way,” he said.
Emergency service personnel are frustrated at the number of flood rescues conducted over the weekend which tied up valuable resources because of warnings about entering flood affected areas being ignored.
Acting Assistant Commissioner Stewart said the community needs to do more than listen to the warnings. They need to act.
“Please, have the conversation with your husband, wife, partner, sons and daughters, about the dangers of entering flood affected areas. It’s just not worth the risk,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Stewart said.
Some of the flood rescues since Friday include four teenagers from the surf at Stockton, and two tourists from the water at Foster yesterday.
“While the East Coast low has now passed Northern NSW and Sydney, the South Coast is being hit. We can’t be complacent.
“Please heed our advice, your life could depend on it,” he said.
For the latest on road closures members of the community can visit the website www.livetraffic.com or contact their local councils.
Members of the public in flood affected areas should continue to listen to local radio stations, or check the websites listed below.
It should be noted this inquiry hotline does not replace the State Emergency Service emergency hotline. Members of the public seeking emergency assistance during a flood or storm should call the NSW State Emergency Service on 132 500, or visit their website www.ses.nsw.gov.au
For weather warnings check www.bom.gov.au
Members of the public can also visit www.emergency.nsw.gov.au for a range of flood-related information. For all other emergencies, the public are advised to contact Triple Zero.