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MidCoast Council issues warning after erosion at Old Bar Beach and Jimmys Beach following damaging surf

Luisa Rubbo, Wednesday May 27, 2020 - 08:38 EST
ABC image
Beach erosion at Old Bar near Taree, NSW, following wild weather off the Mid North Coast. - ABC

Beaches on the New South Wales Mid North Coast have suffered erosion from the , prompting a warning from the local council to beachgoers.



Old Bar Beach, near Taree, and Jimmys Beach at Winda Woppa, near Hawks Nest, are well-known erosion hotspots.

The MidCoast Council coastal management co-ordinator, Andrew Staniland, said previous council work to create sand buffers at the two beaches had worked "perfectly well".

"A sand buffer has remained in place at Jimmys Beach with a little bit being lost," he said.

Mr Staniland said there had been no damage to the Jimmys Beach sand transfer system and 2-kilometre-long pipeline.

"In Old Bar the ocean has cut in there as well, however previously council had done some sand-scraping works to provide a sacrificial buffer and that buffer has done a most excellent job and has given itself instead of allowing the ocean to attack the hind dunes," he said.

"It looks like that buffer has now almost been exhausted but the erosion that has occurred has occurred to the buffer that we placed there for that exact purpose."

Erosion prompts warning

The council will continue to monitor the beaches, but said there is nothing the council needs to do at this stage.

The locations have been inspected and deemed safe, however the council has asked beachgoers to be mindful of the changed conditions.



"A lot of these beaches that have suffered coastal erosion will have a bit of a sand cliff," Mr Staniland said.

"You might experience a bit of drop down on your normal path that you walk onto the beach.

"There may be some areas where there's potentially about a metre drop.

"Sometimes the water sloshes at the bottom of the sand cliff and people have got nowhere to go — they can't climb a metre worth of unstable sand."



The council said 20,000 cubic metres of sand from a major dredging project underway in Hawks Nest will be used to replenish Jimmys Beach.

"That program will look at moving 120,000 cubic metres worth of sand out of a boating navigational channel and we'll be placing the bulk of that sand on a stockpile at Winda Woppa," Mr Staniland said.

"Later in the year we'll be renourishing Jimmys Beach with the sand out of that campaign as well."

The council is writing a Coastal Management Program for Old Bar Beach and Manning Point which will set out the long-term coastal management strategies available to those communities.

The program is required to be with the NSW Government by the end of 2021.


- ABC

© ABC 2020

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