Macksville SES compiles report from community Flood Forum feedback

Steve Patterson – SES Zone Commander Northern Zone attending the Flood Forum at Macksville.


TELL US your experience, is the SES’s clarion call to the Nambucca Valley communities that were impacted by the floods of March 2021.

The volunteer State Emergency Service is setting up community Flood Forums around the area to find out firsthand what they did well, and what they could improve on for future efficiencies in their free rescue service.

Steve Patterson, Zone Commander Northern Zone, attending the Flood Forum at Macksville on May 27 told News Of The Area, “Tonight is about hearing what the community experienced; no two floods are the same and this forum is an opportunity for us to hear what they have to tell us.

“It’s hugely important for us and crucial to the recovery process to be heard.

“We need to do more – we need to do better; and communicate accurately to you so you can help yourselves better,” he told the community.

Steve Lawrence, NSW SES Community Capability Officer said the SES in Macksville “was stretched”, with only 12 active members, and called for more people to join the service.

All feedback on the night was recorded which, everyone was told, would be collated into a report which will be available to the community and will inform the SES’s action planning moving forwards.

“It’s interesting to hear people’s expectations around where they can get help from,” Steve told News Of The Area after the event.

“It’s a bit perturbing when we asked how many people read the BoM or SES websites for weather emergency news.

“not a lot of hands went up, they’re going to Facebook instead, which we all know has mis-information.

“There’s a big education drive needed to help people understand the conditions and the warning signs about what the river height predictions mean.”

Learning from other flood-affected communities and holding workshops for residents to learn and share, was a community recommendation that was agreed by all as worthwhile going forwards.

To give your feedback, email: [email protected]

To find out about volunteering see the SES website –




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