Caravan stuck in Victoria

By Daniel Hughes

When Trevor and Margaret Powell drove their caravan to the shores of the Murray River in Victoria for fishing and to see family, they didn't predict being stuck there for the next five months.

The couple arrived on the shores of the Murray River earlier this year to spend some time with their daughter and Tocumwal resident, Leesa Taylor.

Since arriving in February on the Victorian side of the river, pegged down opposite Finley Beach, the Powells have been plagued with issues caused by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Including most recently being unable to receive a permit to cross into Tocumwal to see their daughter, who has her own medical challenges.

“Although we've lived on the river since February, our postal address is for Koonamoo so we've been declined a permit with the recent border zone allocations,” Mr Powell said.

“It's been very challenging for us since we want to be able to get across the bridge to help our daughter who has asthma.

“Fortunately we've been able to travel around Victoria but are still unable to access our doctor in Finley when needed.

“It's been a slog to get anywhere.”

Mr Powell has also faced challenges with waste disposal and refilling their caravan with drinkable water.

“Because of where we are on the border we've been driving only a few kms across to Town Beach to dispose of waste and fill up our water,” Mr Powell said.

“Now because we can't get across the border we are having to go to Cobram showgrounds which is fortunate we can, but there's a big different between a few kms and about 20km just to fill up with water.”

In a world without COVID-19 restrictions, the Powells would already be at their next destination, visiting their sons who live on Bribie Island, Queensland.

It appears as though the Powells will be stuck for a little while longer with Victoria recording more than 400 new positive COVID-19 cases and five deaths from the virus on Thursday, July 23.

“It's a really nice spot here but because of the system and distribution of information we are unable to stay up-to date to know when we can travel again,” Mr Powell added.

“There's so much uncertainty and having to isolate if we travel over the border to see our daughter will cause big problems even though we've been living in the community zone for the past five months.

“Hopefully we can travel again soon, but we don't know when.”