Witness targets drainage

Alan Mann is hounded by the media outside the Emerald courthouse.
Alan Mann is hounded by the media outside the Emerald courthouse.

THERESA St resident Alan Mann was hounded by the media as he left the Queensland Floods Commission of Inquiry on Wednesday.

He’d taken the stand and told the packed courtroom badly designed development west of the Capricorn Hwy had distorted the natural waterways to such a degree, drainage channels were incapable of handling the magnitude of the Emerald floodwaters.

Mr Mann told the inquiry half an inch of floodwaters swept through his home in 2008, but this time about a metre inundated his Theresa St home.

He had no choice but to evacuate to a relative’s Burns Ave home.

“We haven’t got the infrastructure to handle it (floodwaters),” he told the media scrum outside the courthouse.

“The town has grown and it’s a great place to live (but) there’s been development going on that affects businesses and houses when we get events like this.

“It definitely put more water into my area and it’s just put more pressure on the drainage system that’s there.”

Mr Mann was the first to take the stand on Wednesday morning, and said the Central Highlands Regional Council had failed in its duty to maintain the LN1 drain.

He said the drain was overgrown with weeds and “trees” which impeded the floodwater flow.

“What’s done is done, you can’t change it,” he said.

“Hopefully things can get put in place and the experts can work it out.”

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