Flood of stories shows scope of region’s worst disaster

This year’s news stories were dominated by the floods in February-March.

So much so, there is a dedicated page on indynr.com consisting of all of the flood related news. And there is a lot. More than 200 stories.

From the disaster itself to the long recovery, the stories of bravery and the rescues of animals and people have stood out.

Here are some highlights. Read all the stories on the Floods 2002 page.

Swimming to safety

A video was sent in as the floods worsened from Elaine Trustum at Tatham.

Sixty cows swam to the farmhouse to escape rising floodwaters and they were captured on video. They all made it and spent the next few days stranded around Elaine’s home. They ate everything in her garden including her beloved roses.

This video had more than 100,000 views on Twitter.

Watch the video here.

Tinnie heroes to the rescue

None of the people who jumped into boats to rescue others stranded in their homes as floodwaters rose thought they were special and they certainly didn’t think they were heroes.

But they were. They saved thousands of people across the Northern Rivers. Derek Stratton and Marcus Smith were two of the tinnie heroes in Woodburn.

Read their story here.

Whacking snakes in the water

Cath Gregg at Coraki was still in shock when IndyNR.com managed to finally get into Coraki once floodwaters subsided.

“We had to get out. The waters were deep and the current was strong,” Cath said.

“We could see the brown waters swirling around the house.”

Read how Cath was rescued here.

Herding cows in a kayak

Lesley Garred herded cows in a child’s kayak.

She sent this video of her sisters property outside Kyogle as the rain kept falling. Readers loved how her tenacity saved the cattle.

Her sister called her “a legend” in the video. Lesley said she could her father’s voice guiding her as she herded the cattle.

Watch the video here.

Shops reopen after clean-up

It was exciting to see the shops return in Woodburn.

Every business on the riverfront was inundated and the clean-up was massive.

It was heartwarming to see the bakery open again. Sandra Aarts and her staff put in a huge effort to open the shop for locals.

Read the story here.

Farmers feel the brunt of flood damage

Cane farmer Tony Carusi was one of many farmers pushing for more financial support from the government for producers hit hard by the floods.

Mr Carusi lost 78ha of rice, his entire soybean crop, 80ha of young cane and 95 head of cattle.

“I’ve lived here all my life and seen floods come and go. Never before has there been a flood of this magnitude,” he said.

Read Tony’s story here.

So many volunteers step forward to help

Tash, pictured centre in dark blue tshirt) was just one of hundreds of volunteers who helped after the floods.

Tash and her team delivered furniture to the Woodburn Hub and to people’s homes. It required some heavy lifting but as you can see, the volunteers were all smiles.

Read about the volunteers here.

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