People from Bermagui, Narooma and surrounding areas trying to cross Wallaga Lake Bridge have had a rude shock.
The causeway south of Wallaga Lake Bridge flooded overnight.
As of 7.30am Thursday, November 30, there was only signage on the south side of bridge alerting travellers of the closure.
School buses and commuters from both directions have been forced to turn around.
Livetraffic.com is advising travellers to detour via Cobargo.
The rainfall at Bermagui was not as heavy as many other places however one resident in Akolele said "the runoff from the hills is amazing.
"It is a long time since it has been this bad," she said, recalling an incident in 2013.
Bega Valley Shire Council started working with an excavator to open the lake around 8.30am.
As of 9.15am there was still no signage on the Princes Highway to warn travellers from the north of the closure.
One woman had come from Kianga to go to work and was upset to discover she would have to travel a further 33 kilometres for 30 minutes by going through Cobargo.
A number of people had travelled from Sydney, Wollongong and other areas to meet with Transport for NSW in Bermagui to discuss next year's essential repairs and maintenance on Wallaga Lake Bridge.
None of them knew that the causeway had flooded so by 9.45am there were around ten of them stuck on the north side of the bridge.
A Transport for NSW engineer said the bridge was in no danger because there was nothing pushing against it.
Warren Foster from Wallaga Lake village was also on the scene, concerned that where council was working was a burial site.
"A skull was found there two years ago," Mr Foster said.
He said there were also some ancient corroboree rings nearby.
Mr Foster was worried too about the excavator's proximity to nesting sites of three endangered shorebird species at the lake: the little tern, hooded plover and pied oystercatcher.
Bermagui Area Chamber of Commerce and Tourism president Gordon Patterson said it showed the vulnerability of access to Bermagui.
"This should not be happening.
"The causeway needs to be removed so that the lake can remain open.
"That protects the shorebirds and sacred sites and there would be no need to have heavy machinery running over them," Mr Patterson said.
A spokesperson from Bega Valley Shire Council said that council could not provide any estimates on when the causeway would reopen because it could start to rain again.
All council can do at the moment is update livetraffic.com as impacted roads open and close.
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