Rising anger over constant bridge closures due to flooding

UNDER AGAIN: Floodwaters rise well above the bottom of the doors on this vehicle as it negotiates Essendean Bridge over Baffle Creek.
UNDER AGAIN: Floodwaters rise well above the bottom of the doors on this vehicle as it negotiates Essendean Bridge over Baffle Creek. Phil Ip Clynes

THE Baffle Creek community is becoming increasingly exasperated at constant closures of Essendean Bridge nearly every time it rains.

Water submerged the roadway again on Saturday evening for several hours.

Caroline Christian, from Baffle Creek Liquor Store, said the bridge required a rebuild.

"It stops people from staying here," she said.

"It is pretty clear they need to rebuild the bridge."

Interruptions to stock delivery for local businesses and disgruntled customers were among the far-reaching effects of the bridge flooding.

Jeff Kahlu from the general store said the delivery of newspapers to the shelves was delayed until after lunch on Sunday, resulting in unhappy customers.

Plans to increase the Baffle Creek tourism sector are being thwarted by rising water levels, with travellers bypassing the region in favour of alternatives where the only access point will not become impassable.

Tony Bridges from newly established Baffle Creek Tourism said he hoped for an infrastructure upgrade in the future.

"We've made a submission to Main Roads and we're hopeful," he said.

"You can't keep a community going like this.

"I've been here for four-and-a-half years and it's a regular occurrence."

Mr Bridges said there were times when he had resorted to transporting his wife from one side of the swollen creek to the other by boat.

He also expressed his gratitude towards the State Government for listening to the community's proposals for progress.

"Campbell Newman has never ceased to keep us informed," Mr Bridges said.

"He has made us feel like citizens."



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