FLOODING that threatens the livelihoods of many people in Victoria's North East and the Riverina have shocked the so-called experts.
Fortunately, lessons learned from last year's drought-breaking floods across central and northern Victoria have served the emergency services well.
Communities have again responded in fine fashion to bolster volunteers from fire brigades and the State Emergency Service.
Public authorities such as local government, police and now the defence forces are doing their part.
Many on the outside have been slow to recognise the scale of the disaster which appears to worsen by the day.
Once the grey pall of the disaster lifted on the weekend, it became obvious this was a slow-moving monster which would take days and weeks to play out.
The flood is claiming town after town as it spills towards the Murray, still surprising many with its volume and height.
Surely we know enough to ensure this must command our full attention.
It may not be the wall of water that devastated central Victoria early last year, but it may yet cost more in terms of misery, damage and a final repair bill.
Governments have a duty of care to review their response so far.
Have they done enough? It is far better to over-react in these situations.
The repair bill on infrastructure such as roads, drains and bridges is sure to be high.
There are still signs in the main street of Charlton to warn insurers to take heed of what many regarded as a black-hearted response by some companies to last year's flood damage.
Everybody will be watching the response of the insurance companies more closely this time.
Industry groups need to better open their communication lines to members so they can help direct resources to those worst hit.
In time, the wider community will want to help as well, whether it is hay or some other donation.
Decisive action is called for, not dithering.
This flood is worse than many of us thought and it's far from over yet.