Flood warning systems

We operate the Event Reporting Radio Telemetry System (ERRTS) to monitor rainfall within two catchment areas: Hovells Creek and Moolap.

The monitoring range for each catchment is:

  • Moolap catchment: within 12 square kilometres
  • Hovells Creek catchment: within 240 square kilometres

The Moolap stations were installed during 2008 and the Hovells Creek stations were installed after the 1988 flood event. In 2017 a station was installed at Rennie Street which monitors the creek level at that location.  It will alert officers when the Rennie Street crossing is about to be overtopped by flood waters and flood warning signs will activate.  Rennie Street will then be closed to all traffic.

Rainfall details, and stormwater levels in the case of the Moolap catchment, are transmitted to the base station computer located at the Anakie Road Operations Centre. This is where we run the Automated Local Evaluation in Real Time (ALERT) flood warning software.

This data can also be accessed by the Bureau of Meteorology who are responsible for issuing flood warnings for the Geelong region.

Field stations

Each catchment has gauges:

  Hovells Creek Moolap
1 Flinders Avenue in Lara Moolap Salt Works
2 Wooloomanta Homestead in Bacchus Marsh Road Splashdown Swimming Complex
3 Granite Road  
4 Rennie Street, Lara  

Each rain monitoring station uses sensors to measure rainfall via a tipping bucket which is part of the rain gauge assembly.

Once the tipping bucket receives 1 millimetre of rain it tips and causes a radio message/ signal to be sent to the ALERT base station computer.

The message identifies the sensor and the new value of the accumulator associated with that sensor.

Field stations data

The field stations monitor rainfall and the Lara station also monitors water level. Rennie Street station monitors water level only.

Data collected by the field stations is analysed and a decision is made if there is a threat to residents.

We work with the Control Agency to notify residents.

Presently this is by a ‘telephone tree’ or by SMS.

Page last updated: Friday, 3 September 2021