Trespassers enter closed Wollumbin National Park
TRESPASSERS are illegally entering the closed Wollumbin National Park.
National Parks and Wildlife Services (NPWS) is now having to send in teams to clear debris from the helipads at the end of April, in case one of the trespassers becomes injured and needs rescuing.
The park was closed due to extreme damage from weather events and is not expected to reopen for some time.
The park houses five helipads and the team will try to make four of them accessible for emergency evacuations.
"We know that people are still defying the closure and going into the park, so if anyone is injured we want to be able to get them out as quickly as possible," Tweed/Kyogle area manager Damien Hofmeyer said.
"Currently those helipads are dangerous for helicopter pilots to use; also the chopper's rotor wash could cause loose timber to fall."
Mr Hofmeyer said pilots needed an operational work space so all the timber would be cleared on and around the helipads.
Team will then begin work on the summit walking track.
Mr Hofmeyer said ideally the staff would clear debris from the top of the mountain.
"But starting from the top is not going to be feasible as we can't ask workers to begin everyday with a long hike, nor can we helicopter them in," he said.
"Consequently we will start at the bottom of the mountain and clear as we work up."
The NPWS is still waiting for the final report of a geotechnical engineer, commissioned to assess the stability of the walking track and the extent of three land slips on the mid and upper elevations.
There is also a slip near the Lyrebird Walking Track affecting the viewing platform.
The NPWS has now received the written cost from a company that specialises in building walking tracks in Australian national parks.
Mr Hofmeyer said the NPWS was still seeking funding for the work to clear Wollumbin.