Initial beach protection works completed at Wamberal, North Entrance

Some of the rock bags which have been placed at Wamberal Beach as a temporary solution to ongoing erosion

Five and half thousand tonnes of rock have been placed at Wamberal and North Entrance beaches by Central Coast Council crews during the recent coastal erosion emergency response.

A major operation has seen the majority of the rocks brought in from Hunter Quarries at Karuah, with extra bags to hold them flown in from Japan.

At Wamberal, 1,800 tonnes of large basalt rocks have been placed directly on the beach with 1,720 more tonnes of rock filled bags craned in from Ocean View Dr.

At North Entrance just over 2,060 tonnes of rock have been placed on the beach between Karagi Reserve beach access and Hargraves St beach access.

Council CEO Gary Murphy said the response by Council had been successful in temporarily mitigating further erosion, despite further rains since as east coast low and high tides created the erosion emergency several weeks ago.

“The results speak for themselves and show what is possible when you have the best coastal engineers in Australia working with committed crews, the best material available and the emergency orders needed to get the job done,” Murphy said.

“The success of this response will hold us in good stead as we plan further recovery works and a longer-term solution at both locations.”

Works are expected to take a further two to three weeks at Wamberal with more four tonne bags being placed this week and sand renourishment and rock armour to continue for the next few weeks.

Meanwhile, Local Recovery Coordinator Lee Shearer said residents of all but one of the 44 properties evacuated between July 16 and 18 had been given the all-clear to return home, with only one house still considered to be at risk.

Member for Terrigal, Adam Crouch, said the long-term planning phase would now begin with Dr Phil Watson appointed as Chair of the Wamberal Taskforce.

“The Taskforce’s first meeting was held on Tuesday, August 11, and we’re off to a flying start,” Crouch said.

“To complement the Taskforce’s work, the NSW Government is requesting that Council employ a dedicated Project Manager to provide day-to-day oversight and ensure planning for the long-term solution remains on track.

“Building a sea wall is absolutely essential to protect the hundreds of millions of dollars of public and private assets along Ocean View Dr.”

Following the cessation of Ms Shearer’s role as the Local Recovery Coordinator, Council has established a Local Recovery Coordination Committee to oversee the remaining emergency works and address any residual issues.

Terry Collins