UPDATE, 8PM: Tropical cyclone Marcia has weakened to a category 1 cyclone, and is moving south-southeast over the southern Capricornia district while continuing to weaken.
It is expected to weaken below cyclone strength tonight.
The approach of Marcia should produce heavy rain and locally damaging winds gusts about the Wide Bay and Burnett Districts south of the Cyclone warning area overnight tonight.
Currently, heaviest rain is located on radar south of Queensland over the northern NSW coast. There is still some risk of some moderate falls near the South East coast up until midnight tonight.
Conditions are expected to ease for a period overnight in the South East district, before deteriorating again during Saturday as the expected ex-Tropical Cyclone Marcia moves across the district.
These rain and wind conditions may extend inland to the eastern parts of the Darling Downs and Granite Belt district during Saturday but is very dependent on the movement of Marcia.
The main rainfall areas at this stage is expected to be near coastal again with some possible 24 hour rainfall totals during Saturday in excess of 250mm.
Damaging wind gusts may reach around 90 km/hr, mostly near the coast and ranges.
Water levels on the high tide are likely to be near or exceed the highest tide of the year tomorrow. Dangerous surf conditions and beach erosion are also expected on exposed beaches.
Moderate flood warning for the Stanley and Mary rivers, minor flood warning for the Maroochy and Mooloolah rivers and Coochin creek.
A flood watch is current for the Wide Bay and Burnett, Southeast Coast and the Darling Downs & Granite Belt District forecast districts.
Locations which may be affected include Warwick, Gold Coast, Toowoomba, the Lockyer Valley, Somerset, Ipswich, Brisbane, Caboolture, the Sunshine Coast, Kingaroy and Gympie.
Many locations near the coast from Brisbane up to the Sunshine Coast have had over 100mm of rainfall since 9am this morning with several locations having had over 150mm since 9am. Beachmere and Caboolture have both had around 210mm since 9am.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services advises that people should:
- Move your car under cover or away from trees.
- Secure loose outdoor items.
- Seek shelter, preferably indoors and never under trees.
- Beware of fallen trees and powerlines.
- Avoid driving, walking or riding through flood waters.
- Keep clear of creeks and storm drains.
- Surf Life Saving Australia recommends that you stay out of the water and stay well away from surf-exposed areas.
- Check your property regularly for erosion or inundation by sea water, and if necessary raise goods and electrical items.
- For emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500.
UPDATE, 5PM: BoM have advised that significant rainfall is still expected over the next 24 hours.
RIVER UPDATE: There are no concerns anticipated with the Brisbane River at Goodna and surrounding areas. Seqwater has advised there are no gated releases currently being made or planned from Wivenhoe Dam. Only minor to moderate rises are expected for the Bremer River. At this stage it is unlikely that any properties are under threat. Council continues to monitor local creeks and is ensuring that any possible impacted residents are kept informed of any significant stream rises.
CURRENT ROAD CLOSURES:
- Smiths Rd Goodna - Reopen
- Jones Rd Bellbird Park - Reopen
- Albert St Goodna - Closed
- Junction Rd Karalee (at Lyndon Way) - Closed
- Archer St Bundamba - water over road (still open)
- *Intersection of Short & Alice Streets Blackstone - Closed
SANDBAGS: Sandbags will be available from the following sites until 7pm tonight and will reopen from 7am tomorrow (Saturday, February 21):
- Limestone Park - car park next to netball courts, Salisbury Rd, Ipswich
- Goodna SES - 120 Willow Rd, Redbank Plains
- Rosewood SES Unit - 14 Rosewood-Warrill View Rd
The following conservation estates will be closed until further notice owing to the rain event:
- Flinders Goolman conservation Estate - Flinders Plum Picnic Area.
- Harding's Paddock Picnic amenity Area, including camping Areas.
- White Rock Conservation Estate - Paperbark Flats Picnic amenity Area
1PM: As of noon, Ipswich's Amberley weather station had recorded 52mm of rain since 2pm yesterday.
In the latest severe weather warning from BOM, Ipswich and the Lockyer Valley remain among the places on flood watch alongside most of South-East Queensland.
Cr Paul Tully took to Facebook this morning to share BoM briefing details provided to Ipswich City Council, indicating falls between 100mm-200mm were still forecast to fall over the next 24 hours.
He said there were only a small number of local calls to the SES last night, and none required call outs.
Ipswich Local Disaster Management Group remains at alert status.
11AM: Ipswich firefighters are deploying extra crews into priority areas as they prepare for a busy afternoon.
Firefighter Phil Paff said crews, including swift water rescue teams, had been pre-deployed at Esk and Gatton, with extra crews at Brassall station.
"This afternoon things will really start to heat up, as that rain depression moves down the coast," Mr Paff said. "From mid-afternoon onward we expect to really get busy. People will be picking kids up from school and finishing work."
As yet, firefighters have reported no major flooding issues around the district.
Firefighters have urged motorists to avoid crossing flooded roadways.
10AM: The Somerst Regional Council report that Kilcoy Creek on the D'Aguilar Highway at Kilcoy is rising and is currently about one to one and a half metres under the bridge.
Based on predicted rainfalls over the coming hours, Council expects the bridge to close at some stage.
Council encourage residents to factor this into their travel plans and monitor Council's flood cameras at www.somerset.qld.gov.au.
UPDATE, 9AM: Based on current forecasts the Bremer River and associated creeks may inundate a number of roads and some public infrastructure however private property inundation in Ipswich is unlikely.
Advice on specific road closures will be provided as they occur.
SEQWater have advised that there is no dam releases planned at this stage.
Rises in the Brisbane River are likely to be below minor levels and as such will not impact on public or private infrastructure within Ipswich.
Seqwater CEO Peter Dennis said Seqwater was closely monitoring all dam levels, rainfall and potential consequences of inflows into the dams.
"Based on the 'average estimate' forecast from the Bureau of Meteorology, gate operations at Wivenhoe Dam or North Pine Dam are not currently planned. Seqwater is releasing water from Somerset Dam into Wivenhoe Dam to manage inflows," Mr Dennis said.
Destructive winds are not expected, however winds may be sufficient to cause vegetation damage given the ground may be saturated as the event proceeds.
Council's Flood Monitoring Team will continue to operate 24/7 until the key risks have passed.
Sandbag distribution points are operating and will continue to operate throughout the day until 7pm tonight.
The locations are:
- Limestone Park - Car Park next to the Netball Courts, Salisbury Rd, Ipswich;
- Goodna SES Group HQ - 120 Willow Rd, Redbank Plains and;
- Rosewood SES Unit - 14 Rosewood - Warrill View Rd, Rosewood.
9AM: The recent weather has left fields significantly water logged. Council has assessed the current condition of the sporting grounds and would like to advise that all sporting fields are now closed until further notice.
For the safety of the community and to ensure that there is no damage to playing surfaces please keep off all fields. This means that no training, matches or any other use can occur and should be postponed.
The condition of the fields will be assessed on Monday and clubs will be advised as soon as possible when the fields can be reactivated for use.
If you have any questions please contact the Sport and Recreation Team on 3810 6666
5AM: Ipswich and Somerset local disaster management groups are on alert status in anticipation of huge rainfalls forecast today as a result of Tropical Cyclone Marcia.
The system is forecast to hit the Queensland coast between St Lawrence and Gladstone early this morning as a category 5 cyclone.
Ipswich will likely miss the high-speed winds due to hit the coastline.
Instead, the biggest risk for the city will be localised flooding from rainfall the Bureau of Meteorology has forecast could be 200-300mm in 24 hours.
BOM spokesman Jess Carey said rain in Ipswich would likely start this morning and continue all day with the potential to continue into Saturday.
He said there was a very good chance of significant rises in the top of the Bremer River near areas such as Amberley and Rosewood.
Mr Carey reminded Ipswich residents that it was possible for the Bremer to flood the city without any help from the Brisbane River.
He stressed the Bremer River was not on flood watch last night, but said the situation was changing so rapidly that it was hard to forecast what would happen.
Mr Carey urged people to keep updated on flood warnings by visiting bom.gov.au today.
"We're seeing this cyclone develop so quickly," he said.
"It's a real waiting game."
Ipswich City Council yesterday did not expect major impact on the city, councillor Cheryl Bromage said.
The city infrastructure committee chairperson said a dedicated team would continue to monitor the situation last night and this morning.
Sandbags were being handed out across three locations and Cr Bromage said while the risk of properties being inundated was low, residents should remain vigilant. You can stay updated on the latest weather at qt.com.au.
- Three days worth of medication, water and non perishable food.
- Warm clothing and closed-toe shoes.
- Mobile phone charger, batteries and battery-powered radio
- Important documents such as insurance and Medicare
- Toiletries and necessary supplies for children such as formula and nappies.