KATHERINE FLOODSHigh flood levels in the Northern Territory’s Kimberley region are expected to remain for nearly a week in some parts with several hundred Daly River residents evacuated to Darwin.
The area has been inundated with 500mm of rain over three days lifting the Daly River to major flood levels, Northern Region Emergency Controller Assistant Commissioner Matthew Hollamby said on Tuesday.
Mr Hollamby said 280 people had been flown by helicopter safely from Daly River and were in the process of being bused to an evacuation centre at the Darwin showgrounds.
“At this stage we expect the Daly River to remain at a major flood level until at least Monday next week,” Mr Hollamby said.
Authorities had previously said around 380 residents were at risk, with some residents already self-evacuating.
The flooding has forced the closure of schools in the Daly River region including Nganambala School, Nganmarriyanga School, Peppimenarti School and Woolianna School.
Kiana School and Lajamanu School in the Katherine region will also be closed on Wednesday.
The area had been on stand-by for several days after monsoonal rains caused by a vigorous westerly flow over the Timor Sea battered the Top End.
The rains prompted a severe weather warning for Darwin and a flood warning for the Adelaide and Katherine rivers.
A severe weather warning was also issued for the Tiwi Islands and parts of Arnhem Land.
Residents in Darwin and some rural areas were warned to prepare for localised flooding in the coming days, with authorities providing sandbags.
A Recovery Assistance Hotline has been established and anyone with questions should call 1800 700 250.