MONTH OF RAIN IN A DAY

Re­gion cops a drench­ing as more than 100mm falls in some ar­eas in just 24 hours, turn­ing creeks into rivers and block­ing sev­eral high­ways.

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Tor­ren­tial rains have caused havoc across the Great South­ern, clos­ing high­ways and dam­ag­ing crops.

Al­bany Air­port recorded more than 90mm of rain from Fri­day to Tues­day, while Mt Barker recorded 104.8mm on Tues­day more than its Septem­ber mean rain­fall of 79.3mm.

South Coast High­way, near Well­stead, and Woogen­nellup Road were among ma­jor ar­te­rial routes closed be­cause of flooding.

Many prop­er­ties in Lower King and Wi­lyung were in­un­dated with wa­ter, leav­ing ac­cess re­stricted.

Well­stead farmer Rob Davey’s mixed en­ter­prise was sod­den af­ter record­ing more than 130mm of rain since Thurs­day.

It brought his yearly total to 800mm, up from 600mm, and flooded what he said were al­ready damp pad­docks.

“I’m re­ally try­ing to keep pos­i­tive but I don’t want to look at it any more. I just dread to think that there is more on the way,” he said.

Well­stead (165mm), Many­peaks, (129mm), Den­mark (108mm) and South Stir­ling (114mm) copped the most rain in WA from Thurs­day to Tues­day.

But just 50km north of soggy Well­stead, Michael Camp­bell’s Gaird­ner prop­erty recorded what he said was an “ideal” 31mm of

rain. The weather held off for the Coro­man­del Poll Merino stud owner, who held a ram sale at his prop­erty 20km south-east of Gaird­ner on Tues­day.

“There were a few is­sues with peo­ple get­ting to the ram sale with the flooding on South Coast High­way,” Mr Camp­bell said.

South of Stir­ling Range Na­tional Park, farmer Derek Cur­wen said he had tipped a mas­sive 188mm out of his rain gauge be­tween Thurs­day and Tues­day.

“We had 188mm at South Stir­ling in about 24 hours,” he said.

“We were all hop­ing for rain, but not this much.

“The most dam­age to crops is not only wa­ter­log­ging but a lot of bar­ley has lodged, the tor­ren­tial rain and winds, some of it is flat on the ground.”

Rain­fall to­tals were var­ied across the Great South­ern, with

41mm fall­ing at North Stir­ling dur­ing that same Thurs­day-toTues­day pe­riod.

By the time of print, 44mm had fallen at Gnowangerup, 92mm at Mt Barker, and 61mm at West Ken­de­nup since Thurs­day.

More than 128mm fell at Green Range, north-east of Al­bany, on Mon­day and Tues­day, ren­der­ing Ashley Wood’s canola crop a “disas­ter”.

Mr Wood was one of sev­eral grow­ers who took to the WA Wheat­belt Rain­fall Re­ports Face­book page this week to dis­cuss the rain.

“My drive­way just be­came a 2m-deep lake, what a mess,” he wrote.

Sev­eral si­los were top­pled last week as wind gusts reached 130km/h, caus­ing dam­age at a grain ter­mi­nal off Me­nang Drive in Wil­lyung, near Al­bany.

Pic­ture: Ti­mothy Waite

The Hay River rose by more than 1m over St Wer­burgs Road in Mt Barker.

Pic­tures: Laurie Ben­son

South Stir­ling's farmer Derek Cur­wen in a bar­ley crop af­fected by heavy rain. Four-year-old Matilda But­ler from Perth makes the most of the con­di­tions at Mid­dle­ton Beach.

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