Heavy rain brings both chaos and hope
SOUTHEAST Queensland dams are overflowing as torrential rain pelted large parts of the state throughout the weekend.
The extreme rainfall that lashed the southern coast and saturated the Darling Downs region has seen some coastal pockets record more than 200mm of rain in 24 hours.
Significant dam spillage was recorded at several locations, including Gold Creek in Brisbane's Upper Brookfield, which was yesterday afternoon at 132 per cent capacity, while nearby Enoggera Dam recorded 110.7 per cent capacity, and Leslie Harrison Dam in the Redlands area had filled to 107.1 per cent.
SEQ Water's grid, which measures the total available drinking water in the southeast, had risen from 56.4 per cent on Friday to 57.2 per cent on Sunday.
The Bureau of Meteorology yesterday had several flood warnings in place, as the period between 9am Saturday to 9am yesterday saw Dalby receive 74mm of rain, Warwick 105mm and Oakey 115mm.
BOM meteorologist Peter Markworth said most of southeast Queensland will get showers and thunderstorms today.
"There is potential for those high rainfalls through both those harder hit (of the Darling Downs and south of Brisbane) regions," he said.
There were a few moderate flood warnings out for the Dalby region yesterday afternoon, which Mr Markworth said may escalate.
"The flood warning definitely has potential to increase, but that depends on how much rain falls through the region," he said.
Mr Markworth predicted the Gold Coast will be the hardest hit region, after Coolangatta received 201mm of rain within 24 hours over the weekend. Brisbane recorded a significant 80mm while the Stradbroke region was lashed by up to 140mm.
The State Emergency Service received more than 900 calls for help with damaged roofs and water inundation.
Yesterday, at least three groups were rescued by emergency services across the southeast after they attempted to drive on flooded roads.
Videos posted to social media showed raging floodwaters tearing through a backyard fence south of Brisbane, while dramatic footage of the Condamine River showed much-needed rain flowing through the previously dry riverbed.
Toowoomba local Grant Rolph, who filmed the event, said seeing the river flow again brought immense joy to farming families in the region.
"It was pretty dramatic, there's been so much rain around … you don't see that very often," he said.
"That part of the river has been dry for well over 12 months, actually some spots 18 months according to locals out there. There was definitely a rush of adrenaline when it came through - I had been waiting probably an hour and a half and about 6km away from me the river was flowing really strong heading in my direction so I knew it was coming down."
Mr Rolph said several families rushed to see the river flowing.
"You could see it visibly building up and coming around the bend to where we were," he said.
"You see flash flooding … but on the Condamine River it's been so dry for so long, the locals were so happy."
Western Downs Regional Council Mayor Paul McVeigh yesterday encouraged residents to remain vigilant as Myall Creek hit a major flooding level about 6am, reaching 3.15m.
The warning was later reduced to moderate, with rainfall of 50-100mm recorded over large parts of the upper and middle reaches of the Condamine River catchment since 9am Saturday.
BOM is forecasting further showers and storms over the next few days for the region.
The Department of Education yesterday afternoon said any decision to close schools as a result of flooding will be made this morning.
At time of publishing, it appeared unlikely schools would be shut due to rainfall.
Picturesque Sirromet Winery in the Redland region yesterday made the decision not to cancel their Day on the Green event, following torrential rain at the Cold Chisel concert the day prior.
The event on Saturday was dubbed "a day on the mud" by punters following the heavy rainfall, however the Mt Cotton venue was determined to carry on with their event yesterday evening, and encouraged revellers to bring waterproof jackets and wet weather footwear to make the most of the muddy experience.