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1.3 Our Major Vulnerabilities


The main road link into Harrington is from the Pacific Highway (A1) and it has only one serviceable access road (Harrington Road). 

Access to Crowdy Head from Harrington is along a sealed but narrow road in generally poor condition. There is an unsealed road through the National Park from Crowdy Head to the A1 at Moorland which can become quite rough and inaccessible after rain.

The Manning River can rise in floods from a combination of local storm water, river flows and king tides, resulting in the evacuation of homes and businesses. If we were to experience rainfall such as Northern NSW had in early 2022, evacuations would be much greater than previously. 

Heavily bushed areas in the Crowdy National Park and Harrington State Park as well as grassland on rural properties adjacent to Harrington Road have elevated risk in drier periods to grass/bushfires.

Climate modelling suggests that floods, drought and bushfires will occur more frequently over the next few decades. It is predicted that global warming will lead to a combination of rising sea levels and more severe storms. This has the potential to significantly increase the severity of flooding due to higher projected storm surges, rising tides encroaching on low-lying land further upstream and increased coastal erosion from more turbulent wave action. These increased events over time have the potential to cause serious damage to existing infrastructure including structures along the coastal fringe, coastal gravity drainage, stormwater infrastructure, sewerage systems and roads.

The effects of disasters are felt first and most significantly by people with disabilities or other vulnerabilities including young children, the elderly or incapacitated.

According to the 2016 Census, more than half of our area’s population is aged over 60, and one in four residents are aged 70 or older. Almost 300 persons reported needing help in their day-to-day lives due to age or disability. 

There is convincing research evidence that the stronger and more connected local communities are, the lesser the impact of natural disasters; notwithstanding that a tsunami could be devastating.

Harrington & Surrounds website is owned & maintained by the Harrington & Surrounds Business & Community Association Incorporated.


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