Water storage overflows

July 22, 2021 BY

Barwon Water Operations Manager Anna Murray and Barwon Water Network Lead Otways Khan Beckett inspect the spillway at the West Barwon Reservoir.

Geelong’s water main storage – the West Barwon Reservoir – has reached capacity and the spillway is flowing for the first time in nearly a decade.

This time last year, the Otways reservoir, located south of Forrest, was at 23.5-per-cent capacity.

However, after a wet finish to 2020 and wet start to the year, the 21.5-billion-litre dam is full.

The overflowing spillway usually attracts spectators but with lockdown restrictions in place, Barwon Water will be sharing drone footage on its Facebook page later today.

Barwon Water managing director Tracey Slatter said the reservoir spilling would contribute to already high river levels caused by the naturally wet conditions, which may mean, as it does during periods of significant rainfall, minor flooding on land immediately downstream of the dam on the West Barwon River.

She said Barwon Water had been in contact with landowners, Colac Otway Shire, VicRoads and other stakeholders to ensure everyone’s safety, and while some properties may experience some flooding no houses were expected to be impacted.

Motorists in the area are urged to observe any flood signage and temporary road closures.