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Mary River expected to peak at 17m as evacuations start

UPDATE: The Mary River is now expected to peak as a major flood at 17m Sunday morning.

A 17m peak is less than the 2013 peak of 19.98m, but will  flood businesses in the Jaycee Way area of the CBD.

The latest warning issued at 11am said major flood levels are expected at Dagun Pocket and Gympie overnight Saturday into Sunday.

Rainfall totals of 120 to 200 mm have been recorded over the catchment in the past 24 hours.

MARY RIVER ABOVE GYMPIE:

Renewed river level rises are occurring upstream of Moy Pocket. Minor flood levels continue to rise along the Mary River upstream of Gympie. Renewed minor flood levels are rising along Six Mile Creek.

MARY RIVER AT GYMPIE:

Minor flood levels continue to rise at Gympie.

MARY RIVER BELOW GYMPIE:

Minor flood levels continue to rise downstream of Gympie.

Predicted River Heights/Flows:

MARY RIVER at: 

MOY POCKET: River levels peaked below the minor flood level (11.6 metres) Friday night. Renewed river level rises are now occurring with minor flood levels expected Saturday evening.

DAGUN POCKET: Minor flood levels will continue to rise and will reach the moderate flood level (13.0 metres) early Saturday afternoon. A peak around the major flood level (15.0 metres) is likely overnight Saturday into Sunday morning.

GYMPIE: Minor flood levels will continue to rise and exceed the moderate flood level (12.0 metres) early Saturday afternoon. A peak around the major flood level (17.0 metres) is likely Sunday morning, which will be less than the 2013 peak of 19.98 metres.

MIVA: Minor flood levels will continue to rise during Saturday morning and will exceed the moderate flood level (9.5 metres) Saturday afternoon.

TIARO: Minor flood levels expected to exceed the moderate flood level (8.0 metres) Saturday afternoon.

MARYBOROUGH: Minor flood levels are likely late Sunday evening.

Predictions downstream of Gympie will be refined as upstream peaks are recorded.

Remember: If it's flooded, forget it.

For flood emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500

For life threatening emergencies, call Triple Zero (000) immediately.

 

EARLIER: HEAVY rain overnight, whipped up by the remnants of Tropical Cyclone Marcia, has pushed the Bureau of Meteorology's prediction up from the forecast 12m peak predicted yesterday.

A 14.5m flood is classified as moderate and will threaten businesses located around Jaycee Way in the CBD.

Cooloola Panel and Paint gets water on the floor at 15.2m.

Kidd Bridge, which is floods at 9.94m, was closed at 8am today.

Gympie flood committee chairman Gary Davison said most businesses were prepared but he urged them to keep an eye on the BOM.

He said it was possible for heavy falls in the catchment today to push the peak higher.

Mayor Mick Curran, who chaired the Local Disaster Management  Group meeting this morning, said everything was currently under control.

There were no major incidents overnight.

Cr Curran said the LDMG will continue to monitor the flooding situation very closely.

He urged drivers to stay off the roads and people to check on their neighbours.

BOM report as of 5.15 this morning.

Moderate flood levels developing at Gympie during Saturday.

Rainfall totals of 40 to 80 mm have been recorded over the catchment area in the past six hours. Further falls of up to 100 mm are possible over the next 6 hours as Ex-Tropical Cyclone Marcia tracks south.

MARY RIVER ABOVE GYMPIE:

River level rises and minor flood levels are occurring on the Mary River at Dagun Pocket and along Six Mile Creek with further rises expected in areas of heavy rainfall.

MARY RIVER AT GYMPIE:

Minor flood levels are rising and expected to exceed the moderate flood level late Saturday morning.

MARY RIVER BELOW GYMPIE:

River levels rises are occurring downstream to Tiaro where minor flood levels are expected later Saturday.

Predicted River Heights/Flows:

MARY RIVER at:

MOY POCKET: River levels peaked below the minor flood level (11.6 metres) Friday night and are now easing.

DAGUN POCKET: River levels are expected to rise to around the moderate flood level (13.0 metres) Saturday afternoon.

GYMPIE: River level rises above the moderate flood level to around 14.5 metres are expected Saturday night.

MIVA: River levels are expected to rise above the minor flood level (7.5 metres) during Saturday morning and exceed the moderate flood level (9.5 metres) Saturday evening.

TIARO: River levels are expected to rise above the minor flood level (6.0 metres) during Saturday morning and exceed the moderate flood level (8.0 metres) Saturday night.

Remember: If it's flooded, forget it.

  • For flood emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500
  • For life threatening emergencies, call Triple Zero (000) immediately
     

5.00AM: GYMPIE is forecast to experience some minor to moderate flooding this weekend, depending on how much rain falls in the Mary River catchment.

At the time of print last night Marcia had weakened to a category one, but the Mary River was on the rise.

It was expected to peak at 12m early this morning, putting Kidd Bridge under, but not impacting on the CBD, which floods at 18m.

Marcia, or what was left of her, was expected to reach the Gympie region about 5 o'clock this morning.

Depending on her strength and whether or not she stalls, a flooding Mary River could be this region's next crisis.

Out enjoying the beautiful day before the storm. A lonely camp chair at Inskip Point camp ground Photo: Greg Miller / Gympie Times
Out enjoying the beautiful day before the storm. A lonely camp chair at Inskip Point camp ground Photo: Greg Miller / Gympie Times Greg Miller

Tourists come and go

HOLIDAYS ended suddenly for many Gympie region tourists this week.

As conditions worsened yesterday, the Borumba Deer Park evacuated its campers ahead of the deluge.

Manager Wendy Soanes and partner Steve Barben said with Borumba Dam full and overflowing, they expected Yabba Creek to rise quickly.

Ms Soanes said whenever there was a threat of flood or destruction, they closed the campgrounds.

Wet day around Gympie. Mary River at Traveston Crossing bridge. Photo: Greg Miller / Gympie Times
Wet day around Gympie. Mary River at Traveston Crossing bridge. Photo: Greg Miller / Gympie Times Greg Miller

The couple has managed the park for nine years and understands the importance of early preparation for flooding.

Their tanks are full, the pumps have been moved to higher ground and the pantry is stocked.

"We are used to it. We get prepared and lock it (the park) down," Ms Soanes said.

On the coast, Inskip Pt was closed due to the threat of abnormally high tides and dangerous surf.

Many of those campers relocated to the Tin Can Bay Tourist Park.

Out enjoying the beautiful day before the storm. From left Australian Lifegurad Service, Rainbow Beach lifeguard Ben Davis talks with German backpackers, Maria Pilz and Chris Naegele about beach conditions at Rainbow Beach. Photo: Greg Miller / Gympie Times
Out enjoying the beautiful day before the storm. From left Australian Lifegurad Service, Rainbow Beach lifeguard Ben Davis talks with German backpackers, Maria Pilz and Chris Naegele about beach conditions at Rainbow Beach. Photo: Greg Miller / Gympie Times Greg Miller

Owner/operator Melanie May said people were staying put in her park because it was sheltered from the wind and tides.

Mrs May said she had given guests the choice to leave, but many were not worried about the weather.

"We won't have any tidal problems here; they are very safe," Mrs May said.

"We are set back from the water a touch."

Should any power outages occur, Mrs May said a generator was already in place and there was plenty of food.

Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service will not issue any camping permits for Sunshine and Fraser Coast parks until conditions improved.

This includes Fraser Island, Cooloola, Jimna and Imbil state forests.

PACKING: Royal Hotel staff Mackenzi Finger and Murray Benton prepare for wet days.
PACKING: Royal Hotel staff Mackenzi Finger and Murray Benton prepare for wet days. Greg Miller

A flood of preparation

PREPARATION in place of panic was the cry of Gympie business people yesterday in response to the Bureau of Meteorology flood alert issued for the Mary River.

PC Place's Nick Green said although the weather was a guessing game, he wanted to be prepared just in case his flood-prone River Rd business was affected.

"It's one of those really weird ones this time - we just don't know what's going to happen," he said.

Initial coverage of Tropical Cyclone Marcia meant people were alerted early to approaching heavy rainfall.

Gympie flood committee chairman Garry Davison said it was sensible to be prepared, but even when heavy rainfall hit, there was usually a significant amount of time before Gympie felt the effects.

"Long term heavy rain is what affects the Gympie CBD - there is plenty of time to do any packing," he said yesterday morning.

While some businesses were waiting for a more concrete understanding of the situation, staff at Mary Street's Royal Hotel got a head start when they evacuated the hotel's downstairs bar yesterday.

"We've got a better understanding of what to expect," duty manager Murray Benton said.

"If we can empty our place in time, then the plan is to help as many people as possible."

Business people were closely monitoring the BoM website, local news and social media for updates.

And while not inundated with water yet, Gympie businesses have been flooded with community support.

Gympie Times

Topics:  gympie, mary river, wildweather




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