Lismore City Council, in New South Wales, is half way through repairing the Browns Creek pumps which sustained significant damage in the March 2017 flood, with the first fully refurbished pump installed in the middle if September.
One pump was left completely out of action and the other only partially operational following the flood, and Council had to call on Fire and Rescue NSW to transport a pump from Sydney during minor flooding over the June 2017 long weekend.
The first of the Browns Creek pumps was craned out and transported to Brisbane in late June 2017, with the delicate operation to remove the pump station roof and crane it onto a truck taking several hours.
One by one the pumps are being transported to a specialised engineering factory to test the extent of the damage.
Each pump is 12m long, weighs around seven tonnes and can extract more than 10 million litres of floodwater per hour – the equivalent of around four olympic-sized swimming pools.
Lismore City Council’s Local Emergency Management Officer Scott Turner said, “These are significant pieces of machinery designed to withstand and operate during times of flood, and this is the first time we have seen them sustain significant damage. It just goes to show how unusual and powerful the March flood was.”
In an interview with The Northern Star, Manager of Civic Services Darren Patch said the repair costs for both pumps are still within councils original quote of $150,000.
“Nothing out of the ordinary, repairs to the propeller which was damaged by flood debris and the shaft going from the propeller up to the motor, which was bent,” Mr Patch said.
“They will all be 100 per cent operational once completed, and we will have peace of mind, ready for the next major event whenever that is likely to be.”