Several people pulled from cars in Queensland flood rescues, as Logan River hits peak

Date: 2021-11-27 21:33:53

Several people including a newborn baby were rescued from floodwaters overnight, prompting a warning from police, as the Logan River hit a peak at Beaudesert. 

The Bureau of Meteorology said the river peaked at 10.12 metres around 3pm this afternoon and is now starting to recede.

Although rainfall has eased, up to 100 millimetres fell in the catchment in less than 24 hours.

“Depending on where you are in relation to the river … it is possible that if we have major flood levels reached, there are the major impacts that you need to be mindful of,” said BOM meteorologist Helen Reid.

“A lot of that south-east corner is covered by flooding of some description.”

Severe thunderstorm warning issued

A severe thunderstorm warning was issued late Saturday for the southern parts of the Darling Downs and Granite Belt.

BOM said heavy rainfall on Saturday night could lead to flash flooding at Inglewood, Texas, Millmerran, Chinchilla, Miles and Tara.

Earlier, police urged drivers to avoid flooded areas after officers were forced to rescue several people from flash flooding on Friday night.

Three people, including a six-week-old baby, were caught at Swan Creek, near Warwick just after midnight.

A spokesperson for Queensland Emergency Services said the rescue was the “scariest moment of his [the police officer’s] career”.

Ten minutes after that rescue, police used a rope to form a human chain through strong, waist-high currents to rescue a woman who had become trapped in her car at Swan Creek, Queensland Police said in a statement.

Then at around 3.20am, they pulled a man and a boy from a four-wheel-drive stuck in flood water further north at Glenore Grove.

On Saturday, Darling Downs District Superintendent Danny Shaw urged motorists not to take any chances.

Floodwaters at Bororen, in the Gladstone region.(Supplied: Nathan Donges)

Excavator called in for rescue

Earlier Friday evening at about 7pm, five emergency crews were called to Tingoora in the South Burnett.

A swift water boat was launched, rescuing two people from two separate vehicles, and a dog.

Further south, in the Scenic Rim, flash flooding surrounded two campers, stranding them at Barney View.

Emergency services spent almost two hours trying to rescue them, before an excavator was called in around midnight.

An excavator in deep flood water
An excavator was used to rescue two campers trapped by floodwater at Barney View.(Supplied: QFES)

It moved earth away to get to the pair and take them to safety.

The rescues come after a man’s body was pulled from a ute that had been washed off the Gregory Highway yesterday in Central Queensland.

Forest Hill in the Lockyer Valley, west of Brisbane, that got more than 100mm.
Forest Hill in the Lockyer Valley, west of Brisbane, that got more than 100mm.(Supplied: Ann Bichel)

Month’s worth of rain in hours

Sizeable rainfall totals were recorded across parts of southern Queensland.

In the Lockyer Valley, Forest Hill had 126mm and Gatton had 88mm from 9am on Friday to 7am on Saturday.

In the Scenic Rim, 133mm fell in Mt Barney and 114mm in Rathdowney.

BOM forecaster Felim Hanniffy said a humid air mass combined with a trough to unleash severe slow-moving storms on the area.

He said the totals in the region were out of the ordinary.

“To have 100 millimetres in the space of an hour is probably well over a month worth of rain falling in less than an hour in some cases,” he said.

“So very, very intense rainfall.

“The environment was very moist and the sticky conditions help facilitate these heavy rain events.”

Big wet here to stay

Ms Reid said the trough that had been driving the rain had moved slightly to the east, though she said thunderstorms could still bring heavy rain.

“We’re hoping that the next day or two will mean there’s less rain coming in over the course of the weekend,” she said.

Flooding north of Emerald.
Flooding north of Emerald.(Supplied; Warrick Stent-Smith)

“It’s good news as the rivers that are in major flooding can work through the system without too much more going into them and exacerbating the problem.”

Heavier, widespread rainfall is expected on Tuesday and Wednesday in Wide Bay Burnett, the state’s south-east and west to the Darling Downs, Central Highlands and Coalfields.

Conditions would ease on Thursday.

“And when I say easing back, we’re not expecting it to be dry,” Ms Reid said.

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