Flooding rain: what flooding rain?

Sugar Cane
Photo: Zach Hogg / NewsMail
Sugar Cane Photo: Zach Hogg / NewsMail Zach Hogg BUN300414CNE1

ON Saturday, the New Italy region received 433mm of rain leaving sugar cane crops standing in water.

Despite the deluge, Sunshine Sugar CEO Chris Connors said across the board the wet weather had been very positive for the crops and provided a good consistent source of hydration.

"The crops have been looking for some rain," Mr Connors said.

"It has been very dry and this will set the crop off well," he said.

"It was going backwards for a while as we were in drought for two to three months.

"We are still in the growing season and if the rain goes away like predicted we should see another growing period until May and start crushing in June."

Mr Connors said there was cane in water in the Coraki and New Italy region but indicated it shouldn't pose a problem provided the rivers go down and the water can get away.

He said the rain was very welcome and it boded well for the present season.

Farmers in one town, however, missed out on the much needed precipitation.

Bonalbo, near Tabulam, was one region that did not experience the down pour.

Bonalbo News owner Bob Pyefinch said they had witnessed a fair bit of cloud but not a lot of rain apart from a sprinkling of 5-6mm.

Mr Pyefinch said that yesterday there was some relief with about 25mm of rain.

"We finally got a bit of rain because we have been missing out," he said.

"Our creek is not up at all.

"It has been pretty dry.

"There is about two inches of water in it.

Mr Pyefinch said he had a customer come in from Ewingar who was flooded in asking about their situation.

He said famers in and around Bonalbo had been looking for the rain to offer some respite.

"There's a couple who want their dams full," he said.

"It has been a pretty hot summer.

"There has been some rain but they still want more.

"We had to buy water in January.

The Bureau of Meteorology records show the dramatic difference in the rainfall with 6.2mm of rain recorded in Tabulam on Friday while Ballina received an enormous 134.4mm of rain.

Goonengerry, southwest of Mullumbimby, was reported as having 156mm in 3 hours on March 16.

The total rain in Tabulam for the first twenty days in March was 116.8mm of rain, while Ballina had 324mm of rain.

Measurements from Lismore Airport showed 90mm of rain on the Thursday 16, with a total 387.8mm rain for the first twenty days of March.

Evans Head measurements had a massive 437.6 mm of rain for March with the highest rainfall coming on Sunday 19th with 117.6mm of rain.

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