news

“I am absolutely terrified”: Bianca is trapped in the floods with her newborn in Northern NSW.

Bianca lives in Northern NSW with her fiancé Kurt, four-year-old daughter and her newborn child. 

She and her family are one of thousands who are isolated due to the flood crisis currently occurring across South East Queensland and Northern NSW. 

In a bid to raise awareness and tell her story, Bianca has detailed what it's been like for her and her family over the past 48 hours. 

"I am so scared. This flood situation is worse than even my grandmother has seen in her lifetime. I have a newborn baby and all of the roads to access our town are cut off with floodwaters still rising. I am just absolutely terrified," Bianca noted to Mamamia.

Watch: Lismore woman shares her flooding ordeal. Post continues below.

Video via SBS News.

She lives in Coraki, a rural town located approximately 30 kilometres away from Lismore, where floodwaters have washed down the river to Coraki. In 1974 floodwaters peaked at over 12m in Lismore. So far, Lismore has peaked at 14.4m this week. 

On Monday morning, Bianca began to lose power in her house, and those in low-lying areas of the town were evacuated. Today, Bianca has woken to find her family's generator is now out of fuel. "We have no power and many, many, many people are still stranded awaiting rescue, with water levels rising in areas out of town," she shared.

Currently, Bianca and her immediate loved ones are safe, as they are located on the top of a hill. Bianca and Kurt live in a two-bedroom flat with their four-year-old daughter and seven-week-old baby: and because of their 'prime' location, they have their home set up as a makeshift evacuation centre. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"There's no way out anymore except by air. We are taking in evacuees and just hanging in," she said. The formal evacuation centre in the town is not only full, but it is impossible for Bianca and those seeking refuge at her house to reach.

"We have blankets and food for now: there's bottled water but there are at least 15 people here with more arriving so we will run out of supplies quickly. We have formula-fed babies here, so if we get trapped for days we will need more."

Understandably, this entire situation has been incredibly traumatic for Bianca, and countless other Australians. As Bianca told Mamamia, she is currently putting one foot in front of the other but knows that in the future, emotional support will be needed. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"It's just so isolating and it's overwhelming trying to coordinate all of this without any official direction. I have never been so scared. Any recommendations for coping strategies are honestly so appreciated."

Bianca in January 2022 with her family. Image: Supplied. Bianca isn't alone in her fear.

Gina shared with Mamamia: "Our local Lismore Facebook pages are inundated with rescuer requests and tragically one lady stuck in her roof cavity with 20 rescue cats and her roof is tin. Countless reports of elderly stuck in their homes. It’s frightening to think more water is still coming down from Brisbane to Lismore."

Izzy said: "Please don’t forget about us in regional areas. Our town barely survived the flood in 2017 then COVID and now flood again. People are really struggling."

Madeleine noted: "It's beyond devastating. So many displaced people. The torrential rain hasn't stopped. We are in the outer villages of Lismore and activating our town halls and meeting places to host people and give them warm drinks and food. Many people are donating mattresses, blankets, clothes, shoes and toiletries. None of us can quite believe it."

Lastly, Karyn shared: "By evening I was jumping off the veranda with my kids to evacuate via boat. This is my third flood I have experienced but have never seen anything like it. I am exhausted by this world."

Image: Supplied.

ADVERTISEMENT

Bianca hopes to share more of her story when she can, but given her current circumstances and the dire situation her town is in, the mental load has been overwhelming lately.

But it has also been amazing to see the Mamamia Facebook community rally around Bianca, offering assistance, financial support, emergency services contacts and a whole lot of empathy. 

"I have a lot to say about this when the worst is over. We will need support from our government when we begin to rebuild. We still need support, but the community spirit has astounded me," Bianca said.

If you would like to show your support to those affected by floods, you can donate here:

St Vincent de Paul Society have launched two flood appeals to help support recovery efforts in NSW and Queensland. Donations can help provide emergency groceries, clothing, furniture, cover bills and fund a family's rent. You can donate to NSW's flood appeal here and Queensland's here.

The Salvation Army are running an appeal to raise funds for residents in both NSW and Queensland. Donations can help provide food, clothing, toiletries, bedding, furniture, school supplies to those affected and help with the recovery effort ahead. You can donate to the Salvos here.

GIVIT have partnered with the Queensland and NSW government to manage donated goods, services, volunteering and funds to help locals access exactly what they need right now. You can find a list of items you can donate towards on their website.

 Feature Image: Supplied.