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New picnic facilities for Penny's Lagoon


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Maria Island re-opens to visitors


The Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) is pleased to advise that Maria Island National Park is once again open to visitors as of today.

The island was closed last weekend as a result of flood damage and efforts by PWS staff since then focussed on restoring critical infrastructure to enable it to be re-opened.  

 PWS Southern Region manager Ashley Rushton said an emergency water supply has been installed and will be monitored to provide water for essential services such as drinking, washing and toilets.

 The damage in the Darlington area occurred as a result of the Bernacchi reservoir dam wall being overtopped, resulting from a storm cell that dropped 150mm of water on the island in a 12-hour period on Saturday 28 November.

 Although the island has re-opened, ongoing works are required to repair flood damage in some areas and there are some alterations to previous visitor arrangements on the island.

 The main access to Darlington will be via the former campground bridge as a result of the closure of the Bernacchi Creek bridge.

 In addition, the campground has been temporarily relocated to the current day use area near the barbecue picnic shelter. No open fires will be permitted in the temporary campground however, as usual, fires are permitted in the shelter fireplace.

Visitors are advised that access to the Penitentiary and campground will be more difficult due to the changed access and as a result are advised to carefully consider the amount of luggage they bring to the Island.

 All walking tracks, with the exception of the Reservoir Track circuit, are open for use.

 The road to the south of the island has been damaged by the downpour and while open for use by pedestrian and bicycle traffic, is in a rougher state than previously. Near the Painted Cliffs, some creek crossings by foot will be required.

 Bridges and other infrastructure outside of the Darlington precinct have been assessed and are in a safe condition for public use.

 The water supply to Darlington has been disturbed and visitors may wish to bring their own drinking water to the island.

 As a precaution any island water to be used for drinking and cooking should be boiled. The water supply to the jetty toilets has not yet been replaced and this facility remains closed.

 Works to repair the damage will continue into the New Year.

 Updates and information on the condition of the island will continue to be made available be through media and the Parks website at www.parks.tas.gov.au