Lightning bolt strike from a thunderstorm with dark clouds and rain.
Lightning bolt strike from a thunderstorm with dark clouds and rain.

Lightning strikes leave thousands in the dark

LIGHTNING strikes and intense rainfall wreaked havoc throughout the Lockyer Valley and Ipswich on Wednesday.

As dark clouds descended on the region about 3pm, many residents were warned to remain indoors with predictions of heavy rain with potential for flash flooding.

Across Ipswich, Riverview and Churchill registered the highest rainfall totals, both receiving 21mm in the 24 hours from 9am Wednesday.

Redbank Plains got about 11mm while Springfield Lakes and South Ripley both had about 8mm.

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Meanwhile, the intersection of Warwick Rd and Churchill St near Ipswich Hospital was partially submerged as result of the deluge.

An SES spokeswoman confirmed seven calls for assistance were made for Ipswich while just one was received for the Lockyer Valley.

The storms also left thousands of homes and businesses in Lockyer Valley without power for some time.

Energex crews work to regain power. Photo Lachie Millard
Energex crews work to regain power. Photo Lachie Millard

An Energex spokesman said it was a late night for many customers who had lost power supply.

He said it was due to lightning strikes – 180,000 of which were recorded were across the southeast on Wednesday.

“While we resupplied more than 1000 premises, homes and businesses, the network near Withcott Seeds has sustained severe damage,” he said.

Unfavourable conditions prevented workers from reaching about 10 damaged transformers, prompting a call for reinforcements to come from Ipswich.

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The spokesman confirmed power had been restored to all customers as of 8am Thursday.

Fortunately, it appears the run of storms is well and truly over as residents prepare to celebrate the return of the Ipswich Show this weekend.

Sunny skies and temperatures in the mid-20s are forecast across the weekend.

Sunday will likely produce the coolest maximum temperature of 22 degrees while Friday will deliver a high of 25 degrees.

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Read more stories by Kaitlyn Smith here.



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