Eurobodalla Shire Council crews have stacked 400 sandbags into a geotextile structure to protect the shoreline and Bay Road against potential collapse in Long Beach, a suburb of Batemans Bay in Eurobodalla Shire, New South Wales, Australia.
Council’s project engineer, George Workman said the sandbags were a medium-term fix until a more permanent solution is put in place. “We are exploring long-term options for a low-lying revetment structure that is resilient, environmentally compliant and suits the needs of the local community,” Workman said. “We’ll ask for input from the community on the design of the permanent solution by early next year.”
Since July 2022, council’s plan for Long Beach has involved short-term sandbags (pictured in photo above) and beach nourishment work to mitigate erosion, which was part of the Eurobodalla Open Coast Coastal Management Program.
“Last year, high seas washed away sand right up to the road and around the base of large Norfolk Island pines, exposing the trees’ roots,” Workman continued. “We got to work securing the necessary approvals to begin beach nourishment to replenish eroded areas.”
Workman added that wrangling two-tonne sandbags was no small feat for the council crews. “Stitching, lifting and positioning each bag took creativity, skill, and a lot of patience,” he said. “It was no easy task, but our guys persevered and arranged the sandbags in tiers following advice from the coastal engineer.”
Workman said the closest tier of bags to the sea were dubbed the “sacrificial bags” and were ready to take the brunt of the waves’ impact. “When high seas and large swells pound the beach, the bags may shuffle a bit and it’s likely sand will move onto and around them,” he said. “As always, it will be a constantly changing beachscape, just without so much destruction.”