Melbourne Water and our partner agencies are committed to restoring and enhancing Stony Creek following the West Footscray warehouse fire on 30 August 2018. 

We’re continuing to work closely with Maribyrnong City Council, the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) Victoria, and other agencies to implement on-ground recovery works. Due to the nature and extent of contamination, the recovery efforts are highly complex, and our priority is to ensure the health and safety of our employees, the community and the environment at all times. Our works are being guided by the advice from contaminated land specialists.

We are currently undertaking desilting works to remove contaminated sediment from an 800 metre section of the creek between the fire site and Paramount Road. This was the most heavily contaminated part of the creek as a result of the fire. These works started in late March 2019 and are anticipated to be complete by the end of July, weather permitting.

So far, we've removed approximately 1,600 cubic metres of contaminated material from the creek. Contaminated sediment is being removed by excavators and temporarily stockpiled under containment at the fire site. It is then processed and treated before being transported off site for the safe disposal at a secure landfill site under EPA Victoria’s direction. 

To prevent contaminants being washed downstream while these works are underway, creek flows are being diverted around the immediate area via an above-ground bypass pipe and pumping equipment. 

Other recovery works since the fire incident have included:

  • Pumping 70 million litres of polluted water from the creek
  • Removal of 170 cubic metres of contaminated sediment directly after the fire
  • Scraping the creek banks and pressure-washing rocks to remove toxic sludge
  • Removing affected trees, shrubs and other plants in the creek and along the banks 
  • Placing barriers in the creek to collect floating contaminants for removal by suction trucks
  • Removal of large weed tree species within the creek corridor such as Willows, Poplars and Desert Ash to enable access for excavators and other large machinery 

We continue to undertake regular inspections to monitor conditions in the creek.

Long-term rehabilitation

We're working with the local community and our partner agencies to develop a plan to support the long-term rehabilitation of Stony Creek, making sure it aligns with community values, aspirations and expectations. For more information on how you can help shape the rehabilitation plan, visit:

 Stony Creek Rehabilitation Your Say page

More information

For more information on the recovery stage, and to subscribe to weekly updates, visit:

Maribyrnong City Council website

[email protected]

 (03) 9688 0200

For more information and advice on public health, water quality and air quality monitoring, visit :

 Environment Protection Authority Victoria


Last updated:
10 July 2019