Aerial Support for SES During Tropical Cyclone Oma

A helicopter is offering a bird’s eye view of conditions along the North Coast as the NSW SES looks to understand what impacts Tropical Cyclone Oma is having on the New South Wales coastline.

The Rural Fire Service’s Firebird 200 has been tasked with flying from Evans Head to Tweed Heads and over low lying coastal areas, providing surveillance on tidal conditions, erosion and potential flooding.

Currently the Bureau of Meteorology has a Severe Weather Warning in place for abnormally high tides, damaging and hazardous surf, and damaging winds, covering and an area from Tweed Heads to Coffs Harbour.

NSW SES Operations Commander, Mark Somers said the view from the sky allows the NSW SES to make more informed decisions about where assets are needed in order to best protect the community.

“Despite the strong winds, we have been able to deploy the Rural Fire Service’s Firebird from Lismore Airport, to assess what impact exactly these strong surf conditions are having on the coast line and residents.

“As gale force winds continue we are expected substantial beach erosion to occur, which could lead to low level sea flooding in areas like Belongil, Brunswick Heads and Kingscliff,” Mr Somers said.

As the weather event continues the Firebird will provide daily updates on the coastal conditions, offering a comparison of the changing landscape.

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