Rawdon Island resident Pauline Chapman's parents fought in the 1940s for a bridge to connect the island with the mainland.
The 164 metre-long Rawdon Island bridge, built in 1961, replaced a punt across the Hastings River.
Six decades later, Mrs Chapman is among those fighting for safe bridge access for vehicles to and from the island.
Rawdon Island bridge closed to traffic on July 5 as a safety measure after underwater inspections identified major structural issues with the bridge pylons.
Mrs Chapman is calling for certainty around solutions and a firm timeline as the bridge closure approaches its fifth week.
"It is an absolute mess," Mrs Chapman said about the situation.
A report to Port Macquarie-Hastings Council's July meeting said if the risk could be adequately managed, there was the possibility of re-opening the structure for light vehicles only in the short term.
Council staff are investigating all potential solutions for repair, rectification or alternate routes and measures have been put in place, including a shuttle bus, in response to residents' needs.
"Recognising that the Rawdon Island bridge is the only means of access to and from the island, this project is considered urgent and will be prioritised accordingly," the report said.
Mrs Chapman said in the short term, she would like the Australian Defence Force to shore up the bridge for vehicles under 10 tonne with the council to choose from an array of available options for heavier vehicles.
She wants work on a new bridge to start within the next 12 months.
Only emergency vehicles and pedestrians are allowed to use the bridge. That means all goods needed by residents, from groceries to firewood, must be carried or wheeled across the bridge.
The bridge closure makes daily life more complicated.
"I just want every reader to think about if the top of their driveway was blocked off, how would they approach their day," Mrs Chapman said.
"If people are struggling with COVID, this is next level.
"If it wasn't for the neighbours of each person and people checking on others, it would be worse than it is."
On a personal level, Mrs Chapman said the bridge closure made it necessary to take organisation to the next level and condensing her appointments into one day.
The council unanimously agreed on a road map at its July meeting as a step towards a solution to the Rawdon Island bridge issue.
Mrs Chapman acknowledged deputy mayor Lisa Intemann, saying she was the only councillor to meet with residents in person.
Community meetings via Zoom have included Rawdon Island residents, council staff and the mayor.
Mrs Chapman challenged council's chief executive officer Dr Clare Allen, mayor Peta Pinson and Cr Sharon Griffiths to stay in the island's bed and breakfast for three weeks and experience the disruptions caused by the bridge closure.
A Rawdon Island community Facebook page, launched after the floods, has provided an effective means of communication.
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