Official Name of Eligible NDRRA Event: Central Australia Flash Flooding – December 2015

Australian Government Reference Number: 705

Date of Activation: 12 March 2015

Local Government Areas Affected: Alice Springs Municipality

Available Categories of Assistance:

  • Category B – 5.3.1 a) Restoration or replacement of an essential public asset

Allowable Time Limit for Eligible Expenditure: 30.06.2018

Media Releases

The following media release was issued relating to this natural disaster event:

Summary of Event

Over the three days from 21 to 23 December 2015, simultaneous flash flood events near Ormiston Gorge and Kulgera were triggered by slow moving thunderstorms that produced upwards of 100mm of rainfall within a 24-hour period at each location. Contextually, Ormiston Gorge received over half of its annual rainfall within a 24 hour period, resulting in flooding and damage to roads, bridges and infrastructure associated with Ormiston Gorge, Kulgera and Hermannsburg Crossing across the MacDonnell Ranges, west of Alice Springs. This rainfall event in Central Australia was isolated in nature and not connected to the monsoonal activity in the Daly River region in the top of the Territory, which occurred at almost exactly the same time.

The Territory Government submitted the request to recognise the Central Australia Flash Flooding in December 2015 as an eligible disaster event under NDRRA on 22 March 2016 once reports from the Bureau of Meteorology were obtained, which separated the Central Australia Flash Flooding in December 2015 from the Daly River Floods in the top of the Territory that occurred at almost exactly the same time.

On 22 April 2016, Commonwealth Minister for Justice, Michael Keenan, and the former Northern Territory Chief Minister announced that, through NDRRA, the Territory could now receive financial assistance from the Commonwealth to support the repair of damaged essential public infrastructure.

Summary of Significant Relief and Recovery Achievements to Date

Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics project officers visited sites shortly after the flooding and, due to the timing of tenders and contracts, repair works were carried out over the 2016-17 and 2017-18 financial years to the following sites: Arapunya, Delmore Downs, Finke Road, Maryvale Road, Mount Dare, Mount Denison, Plenty Highway, Sandover Highway, Santa Teresa and Urandangi.

The Finke River causeway received further damage in addition to that previously caused by the Central Australia Floods in January 2015 (AGRN 646). Restoration works comprised pumping substantial quantities of concrete grout under the causeway slabs and reinstating protection works on both sides of the causeway.

Category B Assistance Measures Available

To enquire about Category B assistance for the restoration or replacement of essential public assets, please contact Department Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics or call (08) 8924 7530.

For further information on recovery assistance, please visit the Australian Government's Disaster Assist website.