Grantham flood survivor tells inquiry he found body in water

THE owner of the Grantham petrol station has told an inquiry into the town's 2011 flooding he tried to grab a person he believed was swimming in floodwater, only to find it was a dead body.

Marty Warburton gave evidence on Friday, the fifth day of the hearing into the Lockyer Valley flood which killed 12 people.

He said when he took refuge on the business's awning from raging floodwater he saw what he believed was a person trying to swim in the strong current.

When Mr Warburton reached into the water to grab the person's arm, the body rolled over and he realised the person was dead.

Mr Warburton's voice broke as he told the inquiry he let go in shock.

He had climbed onto the awning, then onto his roof, after almost drowning in the petrol station.

Mr Warburton said he entered the business's office in waist deep water to get his personal items then escape to higher ground.

But he said a surge of water suddenly came in through the personal access door and floodwater filled the shop.

Mr Warburton said the water level was then so high the cap he was wearing was bumping the ceiling.

"At that point I thought it was game over," he said.

"I was worried I was going to drown inside the shop, I was running out of air."

The inquiry will consider whether natural or man-made landscapes, such as the Grantham sand quarry, impacted the flooding.

It will also consider how State Government agencies and emergency services investigated matters related to the flood and how eyewitness accounts were handled.

The inquiry will hear from witnesses and experts over the next four weeks.

Commissioner Walter Sofronoff will give a report to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk by August 31.


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