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Flood hazard management

The department has been appointed as the Hazard Leader for flood as part of the State Emergency Management Plan.

As a Hazard Leader, the department leads and coordinates activities that help South Australia prepare for, manage and respond to such natural disasters. 

Have your say on improved dam and levee bank management and other priorities for improved flood management in South Australia

DEW as the South Australian Flood Hazard Leader, is working to improve flood management across the state and is seeking feedback on:

The three draft position papers were developed following an independent review of the extreme weather event in 2016 that resulted in wide-spread flooding. During the floods, levee bank failure contributed to the costs of flooding in the Virginia horticultural area and a significant number of dams across South Australia failed or threatened to fail. The total cost of the 2016 floods was around $70 million in damages to agriculture and local government infrastructure.

The papers have been developed with input from Australian, state and local government agencies, and consider lessons learnt interstate.

Visit the YourSAy website to give your feedback on the draft position papers.

Flood hazard

The department is coordinating information about flood that enables emergency response agencies to plan and implement operational activities in emergency flood events

  • collating flood maps from across metropolitan and rural areas of South Australia to assist the public with learning about their flood risk 
  • undertaking risk assessments to identify the priority flood risks the state
  • providing advice to the community about River Murray flows in South Australia and advice to emergency managers on River Murray flood 
  • working with the State Emergency Service to provide information for community education programs for flood hazard
  • working with a range of government agencies, councils and other stakeholders to improve flood management in areas such as flood warning, land use planning, community awareness, mitigation and emergency management. 

To find out your area’s risk of flood refer to the Flood Awareness Map. The map also allows you to:

  • access relevant flood information to inform you about flood risks
  • easily search for existing flood risks in your area
  • obtain more information about flood risks in your area.

Private dam maintenance and management in emergencies

There are more than 30 000 privately owned dams in South Australia. Some of these dams would pose a significant safety threat to downstream communities if they were to fail. Private dam owners often overlook their responsibility to maintain their dams, increasing the risks to downstream communities. Guidelines aimed at providing dam owners and emergency responders with more information about preventing and responding to such hazards have been recently developed for public use.  

The following documents are available:

Click here to view form.