Floods cause sewage overflow, evacuations

·2-min read

Residents of at least two towns on the NSW mid north coast have been forced to evacuate because of overflowing sewage.

The evacuations in Grassy Head and Stuarts Point, near Nambucca Heads, are the latest triggered by the floods of the past week.

Some 32 residents in Grassy Head were given gumboots by Fire and Rescue NSW around 8pm on Friday evening and required to leave their homes.

They then decontaminated in a foot-bath and were taken by bus to Yarrahapinni Adventist Youth Centre.

About an hour later, the Local Emergency Operations Controller issued an evacuation order for Stuarts Point, a 10 minute drive south.

Septic systems overflowed into yards and streets, impacting 45 homes, police say.

The overflow was thanks to rising groundwater.

There's a health risk from faecal matter and bacteria in the discharge, NSW Health says.

SES Deputy Commissioner Daniel Austin said a number of bulletins had been issued to crews with regards to safety and reminding them they needed to take precautions.

"Of course it is something that we actually train for and don't wait for when we are in this scenario," he told ABC TV.

"We are working closely with health and other agencies to advise the community where we can what needs to be done and what precautions they should also be taking."

Cars parked in the affected area are not allowed to be moved.

The evacuation order could last seven to 10 days, police say.

Mr Austin said efforts were being made to get people back into properties as quickly but as safely as possible.

He also said many residents along the state's coast had starting piling belongings out for collection because they'd been completely ruined as water had gone through properties.

"So whilst the response phase may be slowly winding down, there is still a significant body of work to do in terms of the recovery effort to come," he said.