Residents at Ipswich, west of Brisbane, have been told to
consider moving to higher ground after torrential rain across
parts of Queensland.
The south and southeast have had extraordinary rain over the
past 24 hours, sparking the rescue of five people caught up
in flood waters.
The highest falls were in the Sunshine Coast hinterland,
where falls of more than 200mm were recorded.
Very heavy rain has also lashed Brisbane, with falls of up to
130mm in the 24 hours since 9am on Thursday.
On the Gold Coast, about 20,000 people lost power but all bar
100 have since had supply restored.
The rain has eased but the effects are now being felt in
river catchments west of Brisbane.
Authorities have warned residents in low-lying areas of
Ipswich, Harrisville, Amberley, Laidley and Gatton to prepare
for the possibility of flooding.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services South Eastern Regional
Director Steve Waddell said people should consider if they
needed to move to higher ground.
"If you are told to evacuate, act quickly on the advice
provided and take your emergency kit," Mr Waddell said in a
statement on Friday.
"Ensure you pack light and that you and your family are
wearing strong shoes and suitable clothing. Lock your home
and take the recommended evacuation routes for your area."
The Bremer River is expected to reach minor flood levels at
Ipswich by about midday.
"For Ipswich, the level we're predicting doesn't cause any
significant problems," Bureau of Meteorology hydrologist Andy
Barnes told the ABC.
He said a flood peak of seven metres was expected at Laidley,
in the Lockyer Valley, by mid to late morning.
He wasn't sure whether a seven metre peak would do any
damage, but that is lower than levels seen about a year ago,
when some flood damage occurred.
No flooding is expected to result along the Brisbane River,
which is fed by the Bremer River, downstream of Wivenhoe dam.
The wild weather sparked numerous swift-water rescues.
One man was saved from the roof of his car near Gympie and
another was plucked from a tree near Aratula, east of
A couple was also rescued from the roof of a caravan at
Rosewood, west of Ipswich, and a woman was helped from the
roof of her car at Gatton in the Lockyer Valley.
The bureau says Queensland's wild weather isn't over yet.
Severe thunderstorms packing wind gusts of up to 125km/h are
expected to hit parts of the Fraser Coast from Friday
morning, including Fraser Island, Hervey Bay, Heron Island
and possibly Lady Elliot Island.
Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale said residents were still haunted
by past flooding and low-lying areas were at risk.
"As you know, we as a city become a little bit nervous
because we got flooded in 2011, 2013 and we don't want to
make it 2014," he told AAP.
However, he said the flood threat did not look as bad as
previous years, with the Bremer River expected to peak at 8m
as opposed to 19m in 2011.
He said the biggest cause for concern was motorists not
driving to wet weather conditions and there had already been
several crashes in the region.
Council would keep residents updated on developments via
websites and social media, he said.
Meanwhile, Gympie Mayor Ron Dyne said the local roads were
flooded and the Kidd Bridge would go under about 6pm (AEST)
when heavy downpours on the Sunshine Coast made their way
into the Mary River.
Mr Dyne said floods were "standard fare" in Gympie and locals
were already making preparations.
"We're well-versed here with floods unfortunately. We're
trying to change that reputation, but we've dealt with this
all before," he said.