Homes under threat from rising floodwaters

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Homes under threat from rising floodwaters

Postby sledge » Sat Dec 25, 2010 9:39 am

Emergency crews are preparing for the possibility of homes being flooded near Ingham in northern Queensland overnight, despite an easing of the conditions in the state.

Ex tropical cyclone Tasha crossed the coast near Cairns in the early hours of Saturday, bringing heavy rain and damaging winds.

The system has now weakened into a monsoonal low, but the threat from floodwaters remains.

Police say the Herbert River is due to peak at 12-metres at Gairloch, on the northern fringes of Ingham, around midnight or in the early hours of the morning.

State disaster coordinator Ian Stewart says up to a metre of floodwater could flow through low-lying homes.

"There is a lot of water coming down the Herbert River," he said.

"About two years ago we had a flood peak of about 12.25-metres and we are predicting it could be as high as 12-metres tonight which will mean some inundation in the Ingham township.

"But we believe it will be short-lived and the water will get away quickly."

Police are patrolling low-lying areas and are using a public address system to warn residents to move property and vehicles to higher ground.

State Emergency Service (SES) workers and flood wardens are helping by door knocking homes to alert residents.

Police are asking residents unable to move property themselves to contact the SES for help.

The Bruce Highway is cut off just north of Ingham and Innisfail and police are asking motorists to stay off the major highways until the weather has eased.

Emergency services say it has not been a disaster and calls for assistance have eased overnight.

Emergency Management Queensland says flooding is the biggest concern for authorities over the next few days with between 100 and 200 mm of rain expected to cause more flooding.

Queensland's Emergency Services Minister, Neil Roberts, says about 2,000 people are affected by power blackouts.

"Thankfully there have been no reports of injury, but we have had reports of house damage to at least one home in the mission beach area however," he said.

"There is still heavy rain in the area, lots of roads cut and we expect the rain to continue particularly in the far north over the next few days, and increasing at the system moves into the south-west in the southern parts of Queensland in the next few days as well."

The Weather Bureau says the heaviest rainfall is moving into Central Queensland.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010 ... 101700.htm
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Crews say up to a metre of floodwater could flow through low-lying homes overnight
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