FRNSW begin flying drone missions to assess flood damage across the state - VIDEO - Across NSW

Published: 25 Oct 2022 05:51pm

Fire and Rescue NSW (FRNSW) today has begun flying aerial missions to carry out rapid damage assessments in flood-impacted areas of NSW.

Starting with Australia's 'food bowl' in the north-west Riverina, FRNSW has deployed its fleet of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS), helping farmers around Griffith and Narrandera inspect irrigation systems for possible run-off.

Using the RPAS capability, water authorities are observing the situation in real-time, informing their public safety advice and determining flood damage to communities and the farming industry.

More rapid damage assessments will be undertaken in the state's North and North-West over the next 24 hours, supporting councils and other frontline agencies in checking critical infrastructure like key access roads, bridges, power plants and sewerage networks.

This will include Narrabri, where FRNSW helped evacuate residents from approximately 20 homes overnight ahead of an expected major flood peak.

A 'base of operations' - a joint initiative between FRNSW and the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) - has now been set up in Moree. It can offer safe shelter and supplies for up to 150 firefighters, and will tonight house the first 50 personnel sent in from across the state to help locals.

A FRNSW strike team went to the rescue of a truck driver whose rig was caught in flood waters five kilometres north of Moree. The crew managed to shift the vehicle before it was driven to the township.

At the same time, the firefighters were approached by someone in need of medical assistance. A second strike team was able to assist the patient and transport her to hospital.

FRNSW crews have also been assisting the NSW State Emergency Service (NSW SES) by conducting safety visits to homes in North Lismore and Goonellabah. This involved crews offering advice and support to residents.

Cooma, in the Snowy Mountains, was impacted by rapid creek rises and major flooding this morning, before conditions eased into the afternoon. FRNSW helped capture imagery which will be used by emergency services to prepare for possible repeat events in coming days.

EDITORS NOTE: Video footage is available for download here: [external link]

Updated: 25 Oct 2022 05:51pm

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Details about this incident may change and should not be used as emergency information and/or advice.

For all life threatening emergencies, call Triple Zero (000)

For flood information, warnings or requests for non-life threatening assistance, call the SES on 132 500 or visit the NSW State Emergency Service website here. [external link].

For information directly relating to bushfires please call the Bush Fire Information Line on 1800 679 737 or visit the NSW Rural Fire Service Website here. [external link]