The Ovens River in Bright is always a popular swimming area.  Unfortunately high river levels have made it unsafe for swimming so far this summer.

Mayor Cr Mautone pushes river safety message

Council is reminding all water users of the potential dangers of swimming in Alpine Shire’s rivers and creeks this summer after recent rainfall.

Two floods in three months has caused material to be washed downstream, potentially causing popular swimming holes to be unsafe.

Mayor Cr Nino Mautone said submerged logs and strong currents presented a real danger to all water users.

“The floods have washed a lot of material downstream which could be dangerous for swimmers and those using floatation devices,” he said.

“We are really concerned at what might lie just below the water’s surface, especially given the high river levels at the moment.

“Areas where people might swim and jump into the water every year might suddenly have a log or branch submerged.

“We are really trying to emphasise the river safety message; never dive into a river, always check the water by walking in first and if you are unsure, ask where it is safe to swim at our Visitor Information Centres.”

Usually in December, Council puts up weir boards to make river pools in Porepunkah and Bright.

The river pools are supervised during peak swimming times, however the current height of the river has made it impossible for Council to carry out these works.

“The river pools will not be operational until at least the new year,” Cr Mautone said.

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