Emotional scenes as Black Hawks land at Gatton Showgrounds.
Emotional scenes as Black Hawks land at Gatton Showgrounds.

Worst flooding since '74 deluge

IT is an event Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale thought he would never see – water levels higher than the devastating 1974 floods.

Cr Pisasale said the Bremer River was expected to reach about 19 metres between 11pm last night and 1am today. That is less than a metre below the 1974 level, but the city is preparing for the worst with predictions the water could rise to 22 metres.

“At the end of the day the city has been through hardships before and we will get through this,” Cr Pisasale said.

“We want everyone to be vigilant, support and look after each other.”

In 1974 after days of torrential weather, the city recorded its heaviest rainfall on Saturday, January 27 – 341mm in 24 hours.

The rain forced the Brisbane and Bremer rivers to both back up, with the Bremer hitting a high of about 20 metres.

The resulting floods swamped huge swathes of Ipswich and left the city cut off from Brisbane for days.

Some 41 homes were completely washed away in the deluge, including 12 in Brassall.

At least 1800 homes and businesses were totally or partially inundated during the deluge.

The city had received more than 140mm of rain over 36 hours, and close to 250mm of rain over a week up until midday yesterday.

Significant rainfall also caused waterways upstream of Somerset and Wivenhoe dams to rise quickly. At 8 last night, Wivenhoe Dam was at 190 per cent and rising. Somerset Dam was at 176 per cent and also rising. -With AAP



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