On Friday 14 October 2022, significant flooding occurred within the urban catchment of the Maribyrnong River. In response, an independent review led by Former federal Court Justice Tony Pagone was established to investigate the flood’s causes and contributors. The review has now concluded.

Latest News 

Independent Panel's final report released

The final report of the Independent Panel has been released. This marks the conclusion of the independent review. To view the report, refer to Flemington Racecourse Wall, Second Addendum, 19 April 2024 here.

We will take the insights from the review to better inform future decisions and help the community better prepare for any future event. Our focus now turns to long term sustainable flood mitigation solutions for the catchment as well as the comprehensive community awareness and preparedness program we are working in partnership with Councils and VICSES to deliver.

With regard to the Panel’s findings on the racecourse flood wall, we will now incorporate an examination of the flood wall mitigation into our broader investigation of potential mitigation options across the catchment.

Six-month progress update on implementation of the Panel’s recommendations

A summary of our progress towards implementation of the Independent Panel’s 15 recommendations in the last six months can be found on the Maribyrnong River Flood Review Let’s Talk page here

New Maribyrnong River Flood Model is now available 

We are sharing a new Maribyrnong River Flood Model to better understand current and future flood information in the Maribyrnong River region.

This new model includes both 2024 and projected 2100 flood extent scenarios. This model, as well as a report on how the model was developed, are now available. In the second half of this year, we will be initiating implementation of the new model into emergency planning, land use planning, and flood mitigation.

Sign up to follow the NEW Maribyrnong River Flood Model Let’s Talk page here

About the Independent Panel review

The Maribyrnong River Flood Review is an independent review and has been examining the causes and contributors to the flood event in the urban catchment, including:

  • Any potential impacts of the Flemington Racecourse Flood Wall on the extent and duration of the Flood Event.
  • Any impact of prior works or activities in the urban catchment on flood levels and extent during the Flood Event.
  • Any other matters that may have significantly contributed to the Flood Event.

Independent Review Panel

Melbourne Water is committed to an independent and transparent review process and the Maribyrnong River Flood Review is being undertaken by an Independent Review Panel.

Former Federal and Victorian Supreme Court Judge Tony Pagone AM was appointed as Maribyrnong River Flood Review Lead. Mr Pagone is a highly respected former judicial officer and King’s Counsel whose experience includes serving as Chair of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety in 2019.

The Independent Review Panel's findings and recommendations

The report of the Independent Panel review into the causes of the October 2022 Maribyrnong River flood event was released in October 2023. Melbourne Water accepted all 15 of the Panel’s recommendations and has made significant progress in implementing the recommendations. For a detailed progress update against each of the Panel’s 15 recommendations, refer to Response to Panel recommendations - 6 month progress update April 2024 here.

The Independent Panel also released two addendums, the first dated October 2023 and most recently the Flemington Racecourse Wall, Second Addendum, 19 April 2024, which are available here. This marks the conclusion of the independent review. 

Community participation

Community flood education program

In partnership with VICSES and councils, we are running a flood education program to help people understand their flood risk and the actions they can take before, during and after a flood event to stay safe. Come along to an event near you and learn how to be flood ready. Find out more by visiting the Melbourne Water prepare for flooding page here.

Maribyrnong River Flood Model Webinar

You are invited to come along to a webinar on 21 May 2024 (6.30pm to 7.30pm) to hear from experts about the Maribyrnong River Flood Model and have your questions answered. Sign up for the webinar on the Maribyrnong River Flood Model Let’s Talk page here.

Consultation and submission stage

Community and stakeholders were invited to participate in the review over a two-month consultation period from 17 January to 17 March 2023. This stage of the review provided a vital opportunity for the community to contribute to our understanding of the flood event.

Contributions to the review were invited in two forms:

  1. Submissions: for the community and stakeholders wanting to provide input to be considered in relation to the matters included in the Terms of Reference of the independent flood review. A total of 63 submissions were received, which have all been provided to the Independent Review Panel for consideration and made publicly available online.
  2. Share your flood experience: for the community with information to share outside the Terms of Reference of the independent flood review, including personal experiences of the flood event. In total, 51 community members shared their stories, experiences and images, which have been collated into a Shared Experiences Report available online.

Community information sessions

To support the community to find out more about the review, a series of six community information sessions were held (2 online and 4 drop-in sessions). The drop-in sessions provided space and opportunity to speak directly with Melbourne Water staff and our partner agencies involved with the flood event on 14 October 2022. Over 110 people took part in the community information sessions. Recordings of the two online sessions are available online.

Engagement Report

A detailed report on the engagement activities undertaken to support and inform the public consultation and submissions stage of the Maribyrnong River Flood Review is now available online. It summarises Melbourne Water’s engagement approach, the community response, and the key themes observed throughout the public participation process.

Independent Review Panel public consultation sessions

From 17 to 21 July 2023, the Independent Panel held public consultations. The Panel heard from interested parties and members of the community detailing their experiences of the floods. Melbourne Water also attended and participated in the consultations, including speaking to our submission and hearing from flood affected residents.


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