Your photos of the 2021 Forbes floods

Together, our photos will tell the story of the November 2021 Forbes floods.

To contribute to this gallery send your photos, with time, date and location to renee.powell@forbesadvocate.com.au or via message to the Forbes Advocate's Facebook page.

PS Please don't drive into floodwater chasing that great photo, we value your safety! We ask you to send photos of where you are safely at this time so our team isn't getting into dangerous situations in floodwater either. 

At 6am Saturday, November 13, the Bureau of Meteorology and State Emergency Service flagged that Forbes and the surrounding river floodplains should prepare for major flooding.

There had been heavy rains upstream, bringing water into Wyangala Dam at rates of up to 109 gigalitres per day.

With the catchment already soaked, the dam hit 104.9 per cent over the weekend with up to 80 gigalitres per day flowing from it down the Lachlan River.

Before those waters would reach Forbes, they would combine with the Belubula River and other tributaries, and the BOM advised Forbes should prepare for floods equal to 2016.

The Escort Way between Forbes and Eugowra was the first road to close, on Monday, and water was soon creeping towards Lower Bathurst Street.

The community, and emergency services, swung into action with more than 300 SES personnel on the ground in Forbes.

Thousands of sandbags are filled and delivered to homes and businesses prepared for flooding.

Locals rolled up their sleeves to get thousands upon thousands of sandbags filled, with SES volunteers heading out to deliver them to homes and businesses who could be inundated by floodwater.

The Cowra road, near the archery club, was the next road to go under water and close to traffic on Tuesday.

SES and RFS volunteers were pounding the streets again on Tuesday when an evacuation order was issued for more than 430 low-lying properties, including homes and businesses, in and around Forbes.

But every flood is different - and one observation this time has been just how slowly the water has come into Forbes itself.

The water was predicted to reach the major flood height at Forbes' Iron Bridge on Tuesday night; it was rising about 1cm an hour within the moderate flood range but Wednesday evening.

About 5pm Wednesday people in town saw the floodwaters begin to flow into Lake Forbes, and suddenly things were changing quickly.

Lakeside roads and low crossings were closed and parklands inundated, with the water crossing the Newell Highway bypass and just coming up to Lower Rankin Street businesses.

Well-prepared businesses in town were still hoping to avoid the inundation of earlier flooding and indeed things looked hopeful, with the BOM revising the flood peak back to the major flood level of 10.55m - below 2016 levels - and declaring it was safe for some of those areas that had been placed under evacuation order to go home or get back to business.

Not so our rural community, with numerous roads closed and paddocks underwater.

Downstream, Bedgerabong farmers are bracing for the second wipe-out in five years, and they're not alone.

On Wednesday night, the water arrived in Lake Forbes and it came up fast. There were finally some answers as to where the water had been for 48 hours after a peak higher than 2016 was observed at Nanami.

One Escort Way property actually had water higher than 1990, residents on Littles Road and Landrace Street said it was higher than 2016 there.

The flood peak - in the Lachlan River at the Iron Bridge - was declared at 10.53m at 9am Thursday just below the major flood level.

Premier Dominic Perrottet visited Forbes to see and hear of the damage - and the work to keep Forbes safe - first hand.

Sadly, farmers preparing to bring in a bumper harvest were hit hard by the floodwater, their images of windrowed canola floating on top of floodwater in the gallery above.

The damage prompted calls - once again - for progress on the promised raising of the Wyangala Dam Wall to create flood mitigation capacity.

Police issued yet another appeal to people not to drive into floodwater, with one driver airlifted after becoming stranded and others helped by emergency services on the ground.

By Wednesday, November 24, the final all clear was given to Forbes properties. The last of the impacted residents - those in Cargo Lane, Wandary Lane, Lachlan Valley Way and Muscat Street - were advised the evacuation order was lifted.

The BOM was warning residents, however, to remain prepared as a low pressure trough bringing rain to the region could see river levels rise again. Water NSW had been releasing water to reduce the level of Wyangala Dam below 95 per cent of capacity to allow for inflows.

We would love you to send your pictures, tell us of your experiences in this and other floods, so we can record this chapter in Forbes' history.

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