Old news from Armidale and New England

Local news from newspaper archives

Kempsey area flood

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Monday 29 August 1949, The Sydney Morning Herald

TELEPHONIST STAYS ON Long Shift In Flood.

Ray Borger, telephonist at Kempsey Post Office, stayed at his switchboard for 36 hours in three feet of water during the flood.

He was relieved at 10 o’clock yesterday morning, after the water had receded.

Girls who took over stood ankle deep in mud, while volunteer workers cleaned out the exchange.

Geoff McKay, telegraph supervisor, stood to his task and did not leave duty until 10 o’clock yesterday morning.

He came on duty again at 2 p.m.

The Deputy Director of Posts and Telegraphs, Mr. S. F. Kellock, said in Sydney last night that only 100 of the 600 lines connected with Kempsey telephone exchange were working.

Among the 100 lines operating were those of several doctors, the police station, the hospital, and the ambulance.

Mr. Kellock said he had received information that there was no lighting in the town and the service was not expected to be restored for a week.

The department, he said, had lines operating between Kempsey and Coffs Harbour, Kempsey and Taree, Kempsey and Grafton, Kempsey and Lismore, Kempsey and Port Macquarie, and two lines with Sydney.

South of Kempsey communications were cut off with Fredericktown, Smithtown, Summer Island, Pelican Island, Jerseyville, South West Rocks, Gladstone, Kinchela, Hathead, Clydewolla, Bellinboppina.

Mr. Kellock said that five lines were working with Brisbane, excluding one between Melbourne and Brisbane. One line was operating via Lismore and another via Moree.

Extensive damage had been caused to the telephone lines between Armidale and Glen Innes.

A number of places, including Dumaresq, Exmouth, Black Mountain, Guyra, Llangothlin, Ben Lomond, Glencoe, and Stonehenge were isolated.

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Written by macalba

November 20, 2010 at 9:37 pm

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