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Rain eases over north Queensland, prompting BOM to cancel severe weather warning

Wednesday October 18, 2017 - 18:41 EDT
ABC licensed image
The Bruce Highway has been closed by floodwaters south of Miriam Vale. - ABC licensed

Rain is finally easing in northern and central Queensland after coastal areas north of Hervey Bay copped a battering, cutting the Bruce Highway and leaving several towns stranded.

The moved north to Rockhampton on Wednesday as residents in Wide Bay and Gladstone mop up after localised flooding.

The deluge has seen widespread falls of more than 300 millimetres across the Wide Bay and Burnett region.

But late on Wednesday, the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) cancelled a severe weather warning for the Herbert and Lower Burdekin, and Central Coast and Whitsundays districts.

Earlier, Gladstone Council activated its flood emergency response plan for the region.

Council disaster response manager Michael Colen said flooding had and Baffle Creek, Lowmead, Seventeen Seventy, and Agnes Water were cut off.

"There is risk of houses being inundated down in those areas," he said.

"We're currently doing some modelling along with the state disaster management area to see exactly what levels we're expecting to see in those catchment areas.

"At this point we're not urging anybody to evacuate … people need to review their own risks obviously."

Agnes Water resident Dominique Felber said she had recorded more than 290 millimetres at her property since Sunday.

"I don't think I can remember an October rain as heavy .... as this," she said.

"Most people have accommodated for the fact we live in Agnes and could get cut off — perhaps they mightn't be prepared this time but the shelves in the supermarkets are well stocked."

BOM senior forecaster Sam Campbell said there had been widespread falls of up to 150 millimetres in the region north to Rockhampton.

"There has also been 260 millimetres near Bundaberg since 9:00am yesterday," he said.

"It has been a very wet couple of days in that part of the world, but the good news is the falls are now contracting further to the north and should be focused north of Rockhampton for the rest of the day."

The rain has already on Tuesday as he tried to retrieve his car.

South-east rain to ease

In soggy Brisbane, the rain remains persistent but the BOM said that should ease into showers with clearer skies by Thursday.

BOM forecaster Harry Clark said a new upper system was approaching from the west.

"Showers will increase again on Wednesday into Sunday, but not looking at the extreme falls we have seen over the last few days," he said.

All but two beaches on the Gold Coast were closed on Wednesday, with the council saying Rainbow Bay and Greenmount are open.

It was a similar situation on the Sunshine Coast, with all but two beaches closed.


© ABC 2017

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