Flood fears for Christmas

IT'S beginning to look a lot like a very wet Christmas in the Ipswich area with the unwanted gift of heavy rain likely to cause flooding.

State Emergency Service (SES) crews in Ipswich have been put on alert with rain expected to continue through to the New Year.

Forecasters predict at least 100-200mm will fall in the next few days on already drenched land.

Ipswich SES area controller Arie van den Ende said the Bureau of Meteorology was not expecting storms, just rain.

“We've been put on alert to say that we will get heavy rainfall in the vicinity of between 50 and 100mm a day, and there could be flooding,” Mr van den Ende said.

“The whole district is saturated; anything that falls now goes into floods straight away.”

He said the Ipswich SES was told to “gear up” as they may be called out for jobs tomorrow, on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

“We hope that everybody can be home for Christmas dinner – that's what we hope for. All indications are that we could have some problems and teams out,” Mr Van den Ende said.

Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Geoff Doule said showers will ease today but are expected to return to heavier rain tomorrow and on Saturday.

Flood warnings are current for Laidley and Warrill creeks and the Bremer and Brisbane rivers.

Colleges Crossing and the Kholo Bridge are still closed and will only be opened when water is back to a safe level.

Yesterday the Wivenhoe Dam gates started closing at 4pm.

Mr van den Ende said people should check their roof and guttering, check their insurance and find out what it covered.

He said people likely to experience flooding should have a transistor radio, extra food and a plan to move furniture.

Households can pick up a maximum of 15 sandbags from the Ipswich SES's Thorn Street headquarters.

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