Central Coast houses in danger of collapse due to unprecedented erosion

Madeleine Lewis
Swellnet Dispatch

A number of beachfront homes on the Central Coast are in danger of collapsing after this week's large southeast swell caused severe beach erosion.

Wamberal has been hardest hit with several homes left precariously close to the edge. Several houses have their front verandas suspended over the ocean below and huge rocks are strewn on the sand.

Locals told the ABC the erosion at Wamberal beach was the worst they've ever seen, though the coastal community have long grappled with the issue.

A house teeters on the edge after strong surf battered the coast (ABC News)

The NSW State Emergency Service (SES) said some residents self-evacuated, with a number of homes at risk of structural collapse along the NSW coast. Land has washed away from backyards, with a crane delivering huge concrete blocks to support a number of properties.

SES controller Rolf Garda said he had not seen this extent of erosion damage in the last thirty years. "There's always been impact on that area but for some reason this event has taken away far more land than we expected," he said.

"The SES did some reconnaissance work up and down Ocean View Drive looking at some of the properties and we identified that some houses were pretty close to the slump line.

"We worked with Council to walk up and down and talk to the residents and advised them of the potential dangers."

An SES official said it's the worst erosion he had ever seen (ABC News: Colin Kerr)

The large surf was caused by a low pressure system which formed off the NSW coast on Tuesday, though it fell short of being declared an east coast low.

In response to the surf, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) issued a hazardous surf warning for the NSW coast. The warning remains in place for Byron Coast, Coffs Coast, Macquarie Coast, Hunter Coast, Sydney Coast, Illawarra Coast, Batemans Coast and Eden Coast.

"Surf and swell conditions are expected to be hazardous for coastal activities such as rock fishing, boating, and swimming," the BOM warned.

// MADELEINE LEWIS
© Australian Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.

Comments

Sprout's picture
Sprout's picture
Sprout commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 11:25am

The one with no wall really copped it.

simba's picture
simba's picture
simba commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 1:39pm

yeah but looking on the bright side , theres plenty of concrete on those footings

simba

donweather's picture
donweather's picture
donweather commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 1:59pm

Concrete hanging in mid air!!!

scroty's picture
scroty's picture
scroty commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 2:03pm

When they poured them I bet they didn't think they'd end up as weights pulling the balcony down.

garyg1412's picture
garyg1412's picture
garyg1412 commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 2:40pm

I wonder how deep down those concrete piers go. Nothing like a bit of coastal erosion for the building surveyor to start shitting himself and referring to his professional indemnity insurance.

Hellmanrider's picture
Hellmanrider's picture
Hellmanrider commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 2:18pm

Can wait to be paddling around in the asbestos that they dumped behind their retaining walls when they knocked down and rebuild

ringmaster's picture
ringmaster's picture
ringmaster commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 2:41pm

Well........who woulda thought that might happen sometime down the track when those houses were actually built???

Good luck fixing that up

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:06pm

Ahh don't have to be Einstein to realise if you build on sand abutting water which has potentially large swell action, there will be erosion. The coast north of Sydney all the way to Queensland and beyond has been a free for all since WW2. Planning was non existent and the mayor was probably the local real estate agent. If these buildings collapse they should not be allowed to rebuild them in the current location. If they do, they will have to pile it all the way to bedrock. Cheap construction.

Timmy5656's picture
Timmy5656's picture
Timmy5656 commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:13pm

Not much empathy here for the owners, I reckon all surfers aspire to live right on the beach, I know I do , looks like investing in boulders was the right move.

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:17pm

No way man. If you wanna live on the beach, grab a swag and meld into the natural environment, otherwise fuck off back away from what is an obvious frontline of wave energy and weather events. Suck shit to them. I hope they all fall into the ocean and they create some artificial reefs. I bet none of them surf anyway. Kooks.

Smorto's picture
Smorto's picture
Smorto commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:42pm

That's a pretty insensitive comment that's obviously fuelled by jealousy. Would you say suck shit to all the people who's house burned down in the recent bushfires?

Maybe they should have "grabbed a swag" instead of building their house in the bush or next to bushland?

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:46pm

Ya gotta be kidding. Feel sorry for the owners??? How many of these houses actually have people living in them? From my experience spending time on Cenny coast, Goldy and Byron where they also have houses falling into the ocean, the majority of them sit empty for most of the year except a few weeks of holidays, thus driving people who actually give a shit about the beach and use it further inland because they can't afford a little humble abode near the beach. Comparing it to the bushfires is stupid. Who was talking about bushfires? Feel sorry for these kooks? Fuck off

canetoad's picture
canetoad's picture
canetoad commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:58pm

True. Belongil Beach in Byron will get washed into the ocean one day, but the people that own them can afford it, in most cases.

canetoad

Smorto's picture
Smorto's picture
Smorto commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:02pm

Because bushfires are a natural hazard just like coastal erosion so its a more than fair comparison. How is building a house in a known bushfire hazard area any different to building in a coastal erosion hazard area?

Not sure what occupancy has to do with anything but all of the beachfront houses near me are lived in year round by locals and I have no desire to see their houses washed away.

Curb your jealousy man because if you were offered a beachfront house for free dont act like you wouldn't take it.

mowgli's picture
mowgli's picture
mowgli commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:10pm

Envy.

Jealousy is if you have something and fear another will take it. You are jealous of them.

Envy is you covet something someone else has that you don't.

“Life is a long lesson in humility.”

Smorto's picture
Smorto's picture
Smorto commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:18pm

Yeah but no Mowgli and not what tangent you are on here? Your description sounds more like suspicion or something else, but not jealousy. Here's the definition for you:

jealous
feeling or showing an envious resentment of someone or their achievements, possessions, or perceived advantages.

mowgli's picture
mowgli's picture
mowgli commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 12:24am

Classic Smorto move. I'm unnecessarily being pedantic, but sure...

Try googling "difference between envious and jealous" instead of just "definition of jealousy" next time some nobody corrects you on the interwebs. The one you've located with your sleuthing skills (prompted by my comment) is the bastardised definition.

Just because the term jealous (and its variants) is used in a manner in which people actually mean envy, doesn't mean it to be an accurate application.

The same way people say "orientate" and "orientated". FFS.

Put simply....people using words flerpa derp-aly does not define a word.

“Life is a long lesson in humility.”

mowgli's picture
mowgli's picture
mowgli commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 12:27am

But to get back to the actual point ya'll were makin'.

I feel sympathy for those folks. It would suck.

But the public shouldn't have to pay for clean-up, protecting them, and all that.

I live on a hill in a bush-fire prone area. If my place gets messed up, I don't expect anyone to bail us out or pay for anything etc.

“Life is a long lesson in humility.”

barry-banchong's picture
barry-banchong's picture
barry-banchong commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 12:01pm

Thats better smorto

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:15pm

I live near the beach, surrounded by nature and i'm more than happy. Last years bushfires were unprecedented, once in a generation, just like a tidal wave would be. I I feel sorry for the next generation that have to climb over cement and steel from the washed out ruins just to get to their favourite bank down the beach.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 6:16pm

Yeah, bushfires are a natural hazard, but then again Australia has a lot of bush so it's something we have to live with, while there are perhaps five streets in all of Australia that face coastal erosion, and we know exactly where they are.

Wamberal has no headland protection, nor offshore reef to mitigate wave energy, and the erosion of forty years ago should've been a ringing bell to anyone who wanted to build on the foreshore.

In an updated version of the above article, one of the homeowners threw all the blame back at council saying: "The fact is we have been allowed to build here."

Showing not a skerrick of personal responsibility.

If they were houses that had sat there for generations you'd understand, but to still build there despite knowing the local history while ignoring the growing body of coastal processes is sheer folly.

Of course council shouldn't have allowed it, but I don't think anyone who's built on a foredune or erosion hotspot should be expecting sympathy.

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 6:50pm

+1 !!

batfink's picture
batfink's picture
batfink commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 9:29pm

About 535 Stu, and all of them were sold by the Crown to humans who didn't know that the local council would make shit decisions for 75 years which have led to the situation they are in.

All well and good to say 'fuck them, they're rich', but immediately behind them is a road, with power poles, the nbn, the sewerage line, stormwater drains. At some point you either protect the land or you say 'up yours' to all that public infrastructure as well, which costs us all.

Best long term solution, buy them out, reclaim it as public land, manage it with rock walls if necessary, leave it to the people and protect the roads directly behind the houses.

As a disclaimer, I have a place at Norah Head, heavily affected by erosion. Almost all the erosion was from council firstly kerbing and guttering without looking after where the run-off went. The biggest erosion happened during a storm where it was about run-off of rain, not coastal wave erosion.

Council decisions caused the erosion.. What do you do then?

Petty envy is a bad look, and doesn't consider the long term.

But either way, I'll be fine. Just lay off the envy bullshit. If the Crown sold the land originally there is a moral liability. It's called 'real estate' because of the nature that land is immutable. I know many won't understand the implications, but if 'real estate' is no longer 'real', then the underpinnings of our entire economic system is undermined.

And I'm ok with that also, but I'm not sure you are.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 6:43pm

Envy? That's a misread.

wiggy_piratej's picture
wiggy_piratej's picture
wiggy_piratej commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 7:28pm

Well said mate I grew up in terrigal and surfed that stretch of beach every arvo that ironically is called the ruins because of a house that fell in to the ocean in the 1974 storm.
If you can afford to be stupid and buy on a active sand dune deal with the consequences! Don’t cry poor !

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:55pm

And apologies for the rant smorto, not really aimed at you,(didn't get a surf in this morning) just gets under my grill that you could live on a cliff, a headland, a hill, and still have amazing coast access, right at your doorstep, watch it til the cow's come home, protected by a buffer of rock or elevation, yet these people ignore the obvious, and have to go smack bang on the dunes, where it's obviously open to all the weather elements. Just reeks of superiority/elitism.

Smorto's picture
Smorto's picture
Smorto commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:23pm

All good bluediamond, I love a good rant.

I just dont like how people who can afford to live on the beach (which I wish I could) are somehow more deserving of bad things compared say compared to bushfires or floods. Plenty of people buy houses in known flood or bushfire areas but they dont cop the same grief.

I know people who've worked hard their whole life to afford to live in a beachfront house and they don't deserve to be told suck shit when they life savings are about to be washed away.

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:27pm

Fair point. Probably needed to aim that more at those in powerful places allowing the places to be built in the first place, but still, can't understand how you could buy and build on sand dunes and not consider this a possibility.

Distracted's picture
Distracted's picture
Distracted commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 8:21pm

Council would have approved those lots more than 50 years ago when there wouldn’t have been much concern about coastal erosion and they were building fibro shacks.
For the subsequent owners who purchased the lots and built massive mansions on the beach to now look around and try and blame someone else is crap. Why should other rate payers fork out millions for the privilege of a few.

batfink's picture
batfink's picture
batfink commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 9:33pm

A more nuanced argument there Distracted, and I say fair enough.

What if the land has stayed in the family for those 75 years, but the neighbour bought last week. I'm inclined to say to the neighbour, 'up yours', you knew what you were buying into, but someone who bought 75 years ago, and remember our sweet record on climate change, may have a greater claim.

Of course, we could get serious about climate change, but numpties don't want that, they'd rather go on with their envy debates until the waves are washing on their front door, at which point they'll squeal like stuck pigs.

the_b's picture
the_b's picture
the_b commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:30pm

Wonder which properties on this same stretch of Wambie fell into the ocean in 1978, and were then rebuilt, only for them to just about fall into the ocean again this time around.

Hellmanrider's picture
Hellmanrider's picture
Hellmanrider commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:35pm

Nar those properties that fell in never got rebuild. Known as “the ruins” surf spot. Still bricks and shit in the sand there

Fliplid's picture
Fliplid's picture
Fliplid commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:43pm

“I bet none of them surf anyway. Kooks.”

Can you be a kook if you don’t surf?

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:57pm

Yes. You can be a kook and surf like myself also. It wasn't the actual point but thanks for being pedantic.

Fliplid's picture
Fliplid's picture
Fliplid commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 6:14pm

Your posts are usually very clear and concise so the ambiguity was puzzling. Thanks for clearing that up

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 6:57pm

haha. i definitely feel like a kook more times than not in the surf. Bloody waves always moving. Cheers.

canetoad's picture
canetoad's picture
canetoad commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:16pm

Re Kook definition for non surfer. This is very possible with a lot living in Byron but hiding under Hipsters identity, a lot dont surf and just hang out at The General Store taking selfies and looking super cool, and just waiting for Chris or Liam Hems to walk in. Also known as Squirells or The Beautiful People. These types have replaced the Hippies of the past. Kooks might be too kind though. When they paddle out at The Pass, with no legrope on their new 9 footer after selfies are done, and their Dolphin experience, yoga session, vegan burgers, and on it goes.
I personally like Bad Kooks !

canetoad

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:18pm

hahaha. Brilliant.

Red Kev's picture
Red Kev's picture
Red Kev commented Sunday, 19 Jul 2020 at 3:43pm

Love it, but WTF is a "Squirell"?"

DGW's picture
DGW's picture
DGW commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 3:58pm

this is a couple of beaches from me and no sympathy for them at all. worst part is, this will cost all of us on the CC through rates to fix this shit for them.

pisses me every time this comes up.

bluediamond's picture
bluediamond's picture
bluediamond commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:18pm

Same. Should be obvious.

Hellmanrider's picture
Hellmanrider's picture
Hellmanrider commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 4:36pm

I reckon they should build a wall in front of the properties to protect them. Only catch is a walkway on top that the public can use.

boogiefever's picture
boogiefever's picture
boogiefever commented Sunday, 19 Jul 2020 at 7:00pm

A walkway..... And replanting of the reclaimed dunal system. Fuck their views.

sean killen's picture
sean killen's picture
sean killen commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 5:24pm

Local council will not permit them to put any material but sand in front of there houses.. ( environment issues etc) eventually this was going to happen.. the owners of this property’s have had a gutfull of the councils neglect .. will be interesting to see how it all pans out , now it’s nationwide story. Natural disaster .. tonight’s high tide may be a big disaster

Pumkinhead

harrycoopr's picture
harrycoopr's picture
harrycoopr commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 5:37pm

Million dollar beachhouses! Haha. Only surfers should be allowed beachfront properties ♡

Chaz's picture
Chaz's picture
Chaz commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 5:44pm

people should not be allowed to build so close to beach that area should be all natural indigenous bush to be enjoyed by everyone,serves em right .

333's picture
333's picture
333 commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 6:33pm

This was my local for the first ten years of my surfing life. I've known for the last 20 years that eventually the sea will claim those houses. It does suck for the owners, but they've made not attempts to stabilise the dunes they build upon. All concrete and turfed lawns. These pictures also don't indicate well that behind these dunes is a busy road, homes and businesses that are far lower than the multi million dollar homes falling into the sea. They will all flood, the sea will eventually reconnect with the lagoon that runs behind this spit area. Best option? Probably to knock them all down and do some serious dune regeneration. Walls and concrete blocks only go so far, Stockton is the perfect example of that. But who pays in the end? Those properties will have no resale value now. Millions of dollars now worthless. What happens to the owners? If the council were to buy them out, what would they pay? Sean I have to disagree, it's not the council's fault they chose to build and landscape a vulnerable dune environment in such an unsustainable way. This will keep happening until those homes are removed and the dunes regenerated. Unfortunately it's that simple.

batfink's picture
batfink's picture
batfink commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 9:39pm

Ture 333. Also true that the local council forbids them from doing anything out the front of their houses to protect them.

So if council forbids you from protecting your house, and it goes into the sea, who is liable?

If you build in the middle of a fucking great bush that regularly gets burnt, with no fire mitigation strategies, is it the owners fault or the councils? It isn't so black and white as many assume.

And yes, the roads are lower in terms of sea level there, so when the roads go, whose fault is it then. Let's just keep passing the buck.

blowfly's picture
blowfly's picture
blowfly commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 8:02pm

I agree with most of that batfink having watched what has happened at Collaroy over the years. It's tempting to tell the owners it's their problem but the reality is that there is so much vulnerable public infrastructure at risk if the houses go, the best option has to be to protect the houses. Given the scale of the work that will ultimately be necessary to do that, government funding will be necessary. Welcome to the new climate people! Rising seas, stronger longer lasting storms, higher insurance premiums. Next on the disaster agenda no doubt a river of rain like the one that just hit Kyushu.

boogiefever's picture
boogiefever's picture
boogiefever commented Sunday, 19 Jul 2020 at 7:02pm

Exactly.....poor land use decisions. No-ones fault but the landowners.

sean killen's picture
sean killen's picture
sean killen commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 8:12pm

333 I’m not saying it’s the councils fault.. I agree with you 100% .. I’m only commenting on what one of owners said to me today.. Wazza Hughes they cant do anything themselves re walls or concrete etc to prevent this .. we are one of the few countries who seem to be allowed to build structures on the beach.. ridiculous... it will be interesting to see what happens tomorrow and beyond.. .

Pumkinhead

MartinNow's picture
MartinNow's picture
MartinNow commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 8:27pm

A wise person, a long time ago, wrote: "Build Upon The Rock"

MartinNow

MartinNow's picture
MartinNow's picture
MartinNow commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 8:49pm

And maybe now is a great time to realise, really:
- don't build in bush fire prone areas
- don't destroy your water resources for a quick buck (oil coal and gas)
- don't destroy your water resources for another quick buck (cotton and other half baked ventures in marginal arid zones)
- don't destroy your precious skeletal soils (most of what we do)
- native vegetation is your best friend not your enemy
- biodiversity or perish
- "carrying capacity" is a reality, enough is enough
- the sun is a "never" ending source of free clean energy - grasp it.

This is all really real, not a rehearsal, as some of these property owners are really coming to grips with.

Who wants to be on TV?

MartinNow

batfink's picture
batfink's picture
batfink commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 9:40pm

Can't disagree with any of that MartinNow.

velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno's picture
velocityjohnno commented Friday, 17 Jul 2020 at 9:11pm

Has Wamberal always had a high foredune (where the houses are built), or was this a result of marram grass in the last century? Does anyone have any early photos of Wamberal beach?

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Tuesday, 21 Jul 2020 at 11:39am

Good Question velocityjohnno & Yes!

*Natural Erosion causes...(Choose Any or All)

1900-1910 Points out the High Cliff like Dune Erosion.[Page 13/ re: 26]
https://cdn.centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/sites/default/files/open-coast-and-b...
Either naturally occurring or local deforestation of swamps?

1985:(Paper) E/C shelf drops > 25m.(Here it drops 25m -40m deep)
Possible Sand Trap! (re: GC 2017 Rainbow Quarries trap Sand)

Wind Thermals / Erosion make lite work of cliff like Dunes.
tbb: Kite Surfers are drawn to eroded Beachfront Hangs...Shh!

2020: tbb: Copa > Avoca > Terrigal > # < Wamberal release to become one.
[ECL =2m] Swamp current must ramp off [ # Highest Dunes ] to push out to sea.

*Whiteshoe Erosion causes. (Choose Any or All)

1930-50's Dredge Dunes for filling > {Terrigal Swamp Land sales}

1960's Dredging Terrigal Swamp for Front Dunes {Beach Land Sales}

2010's Govt (Manual) override shutting of Toxic Terrigal Lagoon
This can only amplify ECL Run off Rain to intensify release erosion.

Cross Lagoon Sewage Line (Redos) times with suss Beach work.
Lagoon (e/w) Ocean > removal / rebuild / removal of 2 Beach Homes?

Can't rule out dodgy Oceanfall plans at this point!
re: swellnet (abc) Terrigal Dangerous Pollution...
https://www.swellnet.com/news/swellnet-dispatch/2019/11/03/terrigal-face...

No escaping that all Erosion < > Lagoons < > Pollution are one!
A lot of variables to flesh out...but dem da bones!

ojackojacko's picture
ojackojacko's picture
ojackojacko commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 1:21am

people who build in bushfire prone areas don’t close off access to the bush to the public. people who build on waterfront close off the waterfront to the public and privatise the coastline and the waterfront. we can argue about when it happened etc (and if you really want to go back far enough it was indigenous land) but fuck anyone who restricts public access to any waterfront. it should all be public. beaches, dunes, headlands, all of it. build your houses hotels apartments golf courses across the road or back from a reserve. fuck anyone who wants to build a seawall along a beach to protect private investment. beaches move. walls don’t- until they get washed away - but they fuck with sand movement, dunes, banks, waves

belly's picture
belly's picture
belly commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 8:22am

I want to have empathy but I also can't help but wonder how many are conservative voters (noting Howard actually tried to stand up an ETS but we know what happened since...).
The smart move would be tracking the risk and get out before the risk crystallizes.
PS I've just bought a house in a bushfire zone.

views from the cockpit's picture
views from the cockpit's picture
views from the ... commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 8:22am

Same thing happening Campeche Beach Florianopolis.
Problem is they sunk 100's x 6 metre Eucalyptus logs as break walls which ended up creating a swimming, surfing, boating hazard when they all got ripped out with next swell.
Watched it all over a few months including about 6 houses completely falling into the sea- and fkn debris everywhere.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q91eUJboPws
https://imgur.com/dm814we
HPYDcDn - Imgur.png
(Cant work Imgur :-(

truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher's picture
truebluebasher commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 3:50pm

Sat, 18th July (7) News Update / Video...exactly what you'd expect...can't be good!
https://www.facebook.com/7NEWSsydney/videos/wamberal-beach-houses-erosio...

Norm de Ploom's picture
Norm de Ploom's picture
Norm de Ploom commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 4:06pm

Can’t verify this but I’ve been told back in the days (1970’s) when it was a few beach fibros, a number of residents wanting to build serious homes were told “no” by the Council, then took same to the Land and Environment court, where council lost, thus causing the council to maintain a hands off approach right up to now.

Norm de Ploom's picture
Norm de Ploom's picture
Norm de Ploom commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 4:08pm

Can’t verify this but I’ve been told back in the days (1970’s) when it was a few beach fibros, a number of residents wanting to build serious homes were told “no” by the Council, then took same to the Land and Environment court, where council lost, thus causing the council to maintain a hands off approach right up to now.

andrew-pitt's picture
andrew-pitt's picture
andrew-pitt commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 6:56pm

could always just suck the sand from depth offshore and pump it shore ward, add the costs to the rates of the 75 odd properties with ocean frontages. If i owned a $5mill coastal property i would gladly pay $10k p/a to have a beach, compared to a pile of rubble. At present, they all took a hit in value, say they are now worth 20% less.

mowgli's picture
mowgli's picture
mowgli commented Monday, 20 Jul 2020 at 2:32pm

I'd be interested what an EIA would show in relation to the impacts of mass pumping of offshore areas (i.e. on all the critters that live/rely on the bottom?). And how would the fishos like that? They did it at Palmy...but a one off versus every other year? And engineers always gonna say "aw yeah nah she'll be right".

“Life is a long lesson in humility.”

tubeshooter's picture
tubeshooter's picture
tubeshooter commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 7:07pm

I'd be installing some rod holders and a game chair on the back verandah. Could be the making of a good jewy hole.

lostdoggy's picture
lostdoggy's picture
lostdoggy commented Saturday, 18 Jul 2020 at 8:12pm

People who built on sand dunes think everyone’s envious of them?

Give me a break, we think there should be no development on them you fucktards.

And no, I’m not saying feed it all to the sea.
But I still believe the whole zone should never have been developed, and anything that has gone ahead in the last 30 or so years, well, the council, developer, purchaser, all should have known better.

memlasurf's picture
memlasurf's picture
memlasurf commented Monday, 20 Jul 2020 at 1:37pm

Anybody read the recent report 'Central Coast Management Plan', interesting the way they lay the competing interests on the table, costs, who pays, etc...They have been doing these since 1990 it looks like. Not sure if anything has changed. One boof head tried to sue the council and lost which is a good thing.

tango's picture
tango's picture
tango commented Monday, 20 Jul 2020 at 11:21pm

This issue is front and centre within the coastal management community and Wamberal is legendary for its impacts and difficulty since the shenanigans of 1974. Sounds like it would be helpful for people to understand why it is like it is and why dumping a truck full of rubble like you could in 1974 is a bloody stupid thing to do.

Caveat emptor, anyone?

seal's picture
seal's picture
seal commented Tuesday, 21 Jul 2020 at 9:22am

Unprecedented erosion??
No I think you’ll find there has been plenty of coastal erosion up and down the East Coast over the years, even Wamberal .
Those rock walls didn’t just get there in front of the sand dunes, so I’m guessing there was an erosion event before and will no doubt be more in the future.
What is unprecedented, is the amount of times the word unprecedented gets bandied around by all forms of the media these days and even Swellnet has got onboard now ?!!

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Tuesday, 21 Jul 2020 at 9:24am

Residents have been ordered to evacuate 18 properties at Wamberal, while there was an emergency meeting last night to discuss options. Not sure of the outcome of that meeting.

Meanwhile another east swell is due next Mon, Tues, and Wed. It's from a dangerous direction, however with a half moon the high tides aren't particularly high - approx 1.5m. They may get lucky, whatever that means in this context.

The SMH has a story that highlights the ignorance of homeowners, this time from Margaret Brice, a member of the Wamberal Protection Association and the owner of a property on Ocean View Drive.

"For at least 20 years, a revetment wall costing at least $20 million had been planned for the strip and property owners had been prepared "to pay our fair share", Ms Brice said.

"While homeowners would benefit, so too would the almost 500 homes in the Wamberal Lagoon area behind the road. "If the sand dune goes, so do all the properties," Ms Brice said using a fallacious scare tactic.

Ms Brice appears to have a complete lack of knowledge of what a foredune does. If not for being built on, the foredune would supply sand during storms and accrete during periods of low energy. It's the coast's protective buffer. The only reason the 500 houses she mentions would become threatened is because houses were built and the foredune was stabilised under concrete and grass.

ojackojacko's picture
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ojackojacko commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 8:44am

on the scare campaign stu, there was another one of them on the box the other night arguing that the rates these householders pay is extremely high and subsidises the rates of all other households (therefore everyone should be supporting them). so 10 or 20 homes are subsidising the rates of 150,000 homes on the central coast. yeah right

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pcrisp commented Friday, 24 Jul 2020 at 3:39pm

Cheyne Horan and myself have been trying to get around and introduce a new system available- has been fixing everything in of all environmental issues in Indonesia for the last 15 years (DPS airport doesn't flood anymore!). Faster to construct and removable. For anyone willing to listen, we are available to fix your coastline and create an artificial wave also if you want... https://youtu.be/INhLnyt5pr8 https://youtu.be/UyWE37PMegQ

Patrick's picture
Patrick's picture
Patrick commented Monday, 27 Jul 2020 at 1:39am

Interesting. Anymore info...Have you got a website? Have you already used it to make surfable waves?

pcrisp's picture
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pcrisp commented Monday, 27 Jul 2020 at 7:28am

sps-patent.com

waves tests completed and 1st projects in bali

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pcrisp commented Monday, 27 Jul 2020 at 7:27am

waves tests and 1st projects in bali

udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Monday, 27 Jul 2020 at 9:36am

Wheres wave tests / results ?
This type of Retaining Construction not suitable here..

memlasurf's picture
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memlasurf commented Tuesday, 21 Jul 2020 at 11:38am

Stu looking at the aerial photos of the region the whole area is a mess, Avalon is the same set up but smaller and this goes all the way to Noosa. Everybody built on the sand spit separating the ocean from the fresh water lagoon behind. Something has got to give in an extreme event, which according to the climate gurus, is happening more often. If they want to live there they would have to pile down to bedrock which I have no idea is how deep (probably the underlying basalt which would be deep) and live on stilts -be fun accessing it maybe on hydraulic rams so it can up and down? Rocks one side will only back up the other I would have thought, and the system as you say is in continual movement as it is sand. A really sad tale of the settlement of East Coast Oz.

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Distracted commented Tuesday, 21 Jul 2020 at 12:00pm

Interesting who is actually responsible for any erosion control works. Typically any works below high tide line are on Crown Land, so would require State Gov approval, not Council.
Although in this case I’m not sure as the high tide line is now actually within property boundaries?!
If one piece of beach is stabilised with rock then the next areas to go will be on the edges of the stabilising works and the sand. So any works could actually accelerate erosion on adjoining properties which could be an interesting liability scenario.
Landholders will be very nervous with that forecast for next week.

stunet's picture
stunet's picture
stunet commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 8:53am

"If one piece of beach is stabilised with rock then the next areas to go will be on the edges of the stabilising works and the sand. So any works could actually accelerate erosion on adjoining properties which could be an interesting liability scenario."

For most surfers, that aspect is almost too obvious to comment on. Like, if you put a hard structure down then of course the areas adjacent, in particular the beach downstream - to the north in this case - will suffer increased erosion, yet a number of times now I've read homeowners throw that up as a slam dunk solution.

They may have had a great view of the ocean but the coastal processes remained invisible.

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Tuesday, 21 Jul 2020 at 12:21pm

Here's the solo power surge of the 4 Central Coast Lagoons.
ECL 2m surge traps these lagoon outfalls inshore as a conga line north.
Heavy rains fill lagoons to join until current Ramps Highest point to push out to sea.
That being the Tallest most eroded Dunes at Wamberal Beach.

[Disclaimer] swellnet does not condone following actions.
tbb will issue a YouTube warning on this content.
Here's the Central Coast rad 4 Lagoon Surf Crews

1) Copa Lagoon Standing Wave Grom Surfers
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LrqBFpRlsI8

2) Avoca Lagoon Standing Wave Grom Surfers
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Zg9Y4IvmQQ

3) Terrigal Lagoon Standing Wave Grom Surfers
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lAZ2dLRcuFM

4) Wamberal Lagoon Standing Wave Surfers
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRkd0VtRXfA

Crew can see that one Lagoon can mince a Tall Dune in seconds.
The first 3 relay to race north then ramp'n'rip #4 Wamberal which runs south.
At this High Point they escape out to sea. (Hence the erosion Hot Spot)

One must consider them teaming as a slower but stronger united force.
Weirdly! They may also work as a united force shield in certain swell directions.
No denying they play a part & by looking at those vids, would make quite a team.

marcus's picture
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marcus commented Friday, 24 Jul 2020 at 3:48pm

Huh?

i remember the internet when it was just for intelligent people but.

Nickerless's picture
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Nickerless commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 5:16pm

sucked in rich caaaarnts haha

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shoredump commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 6:30pm

My wife has an ex friend, yep ex, who slutted herself out and picked up an ugly old rich dude in one of these houses. Moved in a few years ago.
Wifey is all haha about it too

memlasurf's picture
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memlasurf commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 5:56pm

TBB it seems in each case there was human intervention to open them up where I suppose without this they blow their load in a less organised manner. When I was a kid at a small hamlet called Somers in the 1960's a similar thing happened to the Merricks Creek yearly however it just happened on its own in varying locations creating a sand bank for us which was a mini point wave when the swell was big enough to get in the bay. The wise men put a groin in to control the Creek outlet and perceived erosion problem and as a result massive erosion occurred further NE (and is still happening) as the sand didn't get replenished by the creek. Took out roads and now there is no beach only rocks to hold back the water. Same situation as Central Coast NSW in that development was on the dunes albeit inside Westernport Bay. There is so much information out there on this type of thing by people who have seriously studied the issue but nothing seems to make any difference.

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Friday, 24 Jul 2020 at 12:36pm

memlasurf...you're onto it for sure...Lagoon storage / release is not as it seems.
First up all 4 Lagoons completely flush & tide with 2-2.5m ECL (Massive combo)
In short that's like a large inlet trying to push out against The Pacific's best surge.

Studies reveal timid Terrigal Lagoon has twice the catchment of larger Lagoons.
More volume + sediment events mix like concrete into wave face to chew into dunes.

Yes! The natural beach berm reflects original once deeper more wooded Lagoon.
Originally a High walled Deep Lagoon is now during rain, a massive ramped Lake
Amplified 'forge' becomes an inlet more often but being shallow, seals in shorter time

tbb is half way thru reading Gosford study & recommends it to Lagoon surfers.
Another quality coastal Paper from nerdy Chix, their innocent detail is ever so cool.
Opens up a whole new world of trigger happy Lagoon surfbreaks & shorelines.

2012 Draft : Coastal Zone Management Study for Gosford Lagoons
https://search.s.centralcoast.nsw.gov.au/documents/00/11/57/51/001157517...

wally's picture
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wally commented Wednesday, 22 Jul 2020 at 6:19pm

Ease up on the schadenfreude guys. Everybody on here lives in a dwelling that in some way is a negative on the natural environment. We are all guilty of that.

On a subsidiary point, I get bemused by people who claim environmental credentials because their house backs on to a rainforest.
Oh, do you mean your block was rainforest until it was cleared so you could put your house on it?

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morg commented Friday, 24 Jul 2020 at 7:44pm

The council can’t be blamed for this stuff up. Blame rests completely on the people who built the houses at Wamberal. Originally (1972?) the Council said no because they could foresee the erosion etc.

@Normdeploom is spot on, The then ‘‘residents wanting to build serious homes were told “no” by the Council, then took same to the Land and Environment court, where council lost, thus causing the council to maintain a hands off approach right up to now.”

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Craig commented Saturday, 25 Jul 2020 at 11:27am
dpc's picture
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dpc commented Sunday, 26 Jul 2020 at 10:58pm

The piers on the house, with the front deck piers exposed go down 18 meters and some go down 20 meters.
The front deck piers were designed to be small and load on the sand incase erosion like this ocured. If i remember correctly the fromt deck was designed to fall away from the house if the larger piers were exposed.
i walked around there the other day and everything that was designed to work has worked acording to design.
The house was built for a Judge in the high court of Australia who was a really good bloke.
The council didnt want anyone building new dwellings on the foreshore.
I think they said due to the 2048 congruence zone where they believe the errosion will reach the road. dont quote me on that though.
The way architechts got around this was by saying they were doing a refurbishment and taking down the back half of the house then rebuilding it. then doing the same to the front half of the house leaving one original wall existing.
if people want to find a loop hole they generally will. they are still building new houses there with the same loop holes.
a rock wall will only make it worse as any surfer knows who has observed them.
I was just out of my time when we built that house it was agood job to work on. however we all new the sea would reclaim it one day as we new the history of the area because we all grew up there.
there should be no building there at all
should be bought back and dunes restored
that would be long term cheaper than the maintenence and stress of a rock wall

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Norm de Ploom commented Sunday, 26 Jul 2020 at 11:42pm

With @dpc here. I know of a number of cases in the Lake Macquarie area where the ‘rules’ have been tested (pushed to the limit) in order to build as close as possible to the water. As in, large ‘renovations’, and some of them bloody big, have been done, as long as they attach to the existing tiny fibro cottage from the war era, they don’t have to meet the 10 meter odd setback.

stunet's picture
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stunet commented Monday, 27 Jul 2020 at 7:54am

The swell is bigger than forecast this morning and coming from the east, high tide midnight last night and midday today.

Testing times.

Willliam's picture
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Willliam commented Monday, 27 Jul 2020 at 9:32am

The swell looked really short period. Lines stacked but also jammed packed together.
See if all the work council over the weekend works or not.
And how much of it all ends up out in the ocean.