News

Wivenhoe spill to stop this week

Wivenhoe Dam spillway.
Wivenhoe Dam spillway. Rob Williams

WIVENHOE Dam will stop releasing water through its spill gates later this week for the first time since January 7.

Yesterday morning the dam was at 123 per cent capacity and dropping, with releases of about 299,000 megalitres per day being passed through its gates.

News of the gate-closing comes after an engineer publicly criticised dam operaters for not releasing enough water from the Wivenhoe before last Monday's monster deluge.

The continued dam releases have also frustrated motorists who travel between Ipswich and Brisbane over the Brisbane River, with Colleges Crossing, the Kholo bridge and the Moggill Ferry closed since releases started.

Last week's devastating disaster flooded and also damaged the Mt Crosby weir crossing off Allawah Road, meaning Jindalee was the next nearest place for motorists to cross the river.

A spokesperson for the dam said the river crossings will no longer be inundated when releases stop this week, but Ipswich City Council has no date for when Colleges Crossing might reopen.

“The continuing releases are necessary in order to prepare Wivenhoe for any future weather events should they occur,” a SEQWater Grid manager said.

“Releases should cease from Wivenhoe Dam mid-week.

“Releases are being made in consultation with the Bureau of Meteorology and local councils, and every effort is being made to limit downstream impacts.”

Engineer Michael O'Brien this week said river flooding was inevitable after a decision to release relatively low volumes of water from the Wivenhoe Dam on Friday, January 7, and over the ensuing weekend.

He said over that weekend the dam's operators released a total of about 200,000 megalitres.

Mr O'Brien claimed scrutiny of official water-release and dam volume data shows the flood would have been moderate at worst in Brisbane had there been larger releases in the days before the deluge.

But SEQWater Grid chief executive Barry Dennien has insisted that although the January 8-9 releases were relatively low compared with what occurred in the days afterwards, this was in accordance with the operating manual to mitigate flooding.

He said nobody had foreseen the extreme rainfall that hit the region last week.

Premier Anna Bligh has announced an independent Commission of Inquiry to examine the recent flood disaster, with an international dam expert to examine the role of the Wivenhoe.

The Somerset Dam is currently at 100 per cent with small discharges through the cone valves into Wivenhoe.

All recreations areas around both dams are closed.

Water has spilled from Wyaralong Dam after it exceeded 100 per cent capacity last week.

The Bremer River flood level as of yesterday was at 7.98m.



Ipswich pensioner wins $260K on scratchie

BIG WIN: A woman purchased a ticket at a Goodna newsagency and is now $260K richer.

Found out while waiting in the doctor's surgery

Shark warning! Ipswich to erect signs at river hot spots

BULLISH: Brisbane and Bremer rivers are full of bull sharks so warning signs are planned to go up alerting residents to the dangers.

Sharks still teeming in Brisbane, Bremer rivers

Firm told to apologise, pay back $16K to Korean backpackers

Boonah Packing Pty Ltd supplied labour to one of Australia's leading carrot producers, Scott Moffat & Co, trading as Moffatt Fresh Produce who supply carrots to major supermarket chains like Woolworths and Aldi.

Boonah business caught ripping off foreign workers

Local Partners

Homer Simpson thanks Australia during Opera House visit

Homer Simpson visits the Sydney Opera House.

ANIMATION favourite gets attacked by seagulls in viral video.

Channel 9 orders second season of Doctor Doctor

Rodger Corser stars in the TV series Doctor Doctor.

RURAL medical drama finds a loyal following.

Katy Perry gets naked to encourage people to vote

Katy Perry in Funny Or Die sketch

Katy Perry has stripped naked for a comedy video

Jogging Tom Hanks crashes wedding in Central Park

Tom Hanks stopped for a selfie with this bride and groom

MOVIE REVIEW: Storks delivers family fun

A scene from the movie Storks.

ANIMATION can be hit or miss but when it hits, it hits hard.

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Housing report points to a lift in local market

AFFORDABLE HOMES: First home buyers have the opportunity to purchase modern new homes in the Ipswich region for under $400,000.

Region shaping up as the "final frontier” for affordable housing

Five ways to slash household bills and save the environment

THINK GREEN: Considering the environment when building or buying your next home can save you big dollars. The Village Building Company, who is responsible for Woodlinks Village at Collingwood Park, builds homes with this front of mind.

THERE is nothing as sweet as slashing dollars from your bills.

Investors out-bid first-home buyers in booming market

Housing generic.

Ipswich's housing market is putting more cash into sellers’ pockets

Another Ripley development

THE ENTRANCE: An overview of the last planned development for the fast growing Ripley area.

85 more home lots released

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.