Storms bring snow to Gippsland

A month’s worth of rain in just three days and alpine visitors marooned by almost a metre of snow marked a storm that engulfed Baw Baw over the weekend.
Almost 90mm of rain was dumped on the Warragul region between Thursday night and Saturday night as part of a severe cold front that covered most of south-eastern Australia for almost three days.
Local flooding occurred in many parts of the region and there were minor landslips on the Darnum-Allambee Rd near Mt Worth.
Regional SES controller Raelyn Ziebe said about six houses in low-lying parts of Trafalgar and Longwarry were threatened by inundation. SES volunteers sandbagged the houses to stop flood waters entering.
Although there were a lot of calls over the three days, Ms Ziebe said it was an unusually protracted storm so crews were able to keep on top of it.
Two carloads of day visitors to Mt Baw Baw had to spend the night on the mountain after almost a metre of snow closed roads to the peak for much of the weekend.
Mt Baw Baw Tourist Rd and the South Face Rd were officially closed late on Friday afternoon due to heavy snowfalls, strong winds and numerous fallen trees.
Visitor experience manager Sally Brook said the visitors claimed they hadn’t seen the barriers across the road and weren’t aware it was closed. The resort accommodated and fed the unexpected visitors and they were able to leave late on Sunday afternoon.
Senior Sergeant Glenn Parke said it was a reminder to visitors to be aware of the weather conditions. “Before you go, check the Mt Baw Baw and VicRoads sites, carry chains and wear suitable clothing.”
Police also closed the road to Mt St Gwinear on Saturday morning. Several visitors had to remain on the mountain while Parks Victoria cleared the road. The road reopened in the afternoon.
Visitors were able to leave Mt Baw Baw via the Tanjil-Bren Road late on Sunday afternoon and the main tourist road re-opened on Monday morning.

Read the full story in this week's Warragul and Drouin Gazette.

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