Rockhampton prepares for floods

Rockhampton's riverside precinct is being inundated as the Fitzroy River swiftly rises.
Rockhampton's riverside precinct is being inundated as the Fitzroy River swiftly rises. Michelle Gately

THE FLOOD warning for the Fitzroy river was updated this morning with the Bureau of Meteorology predicting a major flood peak of 9.00 metres for Rockhampton on Wednesday.

The revised levels will be below the 9.2 metres flood peak in 2011 and the 1991 flood peak of 9.3 metres.

Flooding is expected to continue for several days as the deluge of ex-Cyclone Debbie makes it way through rivers and streams.

The Fitzroy river is expected to be peak to exceed the minor flood level of 7 metres this afternoon and exceed major flood level of 8.5 metres late on Tuesday before peaking on Wednesday.

A number of evacuation notices have been sent out across the city with around 5,400 properties impacted including 3,000 residential, 1,500 commercial and potentially another 900 properties.

Authorities have advised that the roads south of Rockhampton will stay open ahead of the incoming floods due to hit Rockhampton later this week.

The new flood infrastructure, the Yeppen crossing, is Q100 for up to 9.6 metres and 600mm rated.

Banana Shire Council Mayor, Neville Ferrier, said Banana shire residents shouldn't be worried.

"They are hoping the Bruce Highway will stay open and it looks like it will work really well with the new infrastructure,” Cr Ferrier said.

Rockhampton is a main hub for many travelling to and from for medical appointments and Cr Ferrier hopes patients will still be able to get there.

"There are people here that have to go to Rocky for medical reasons whether it be chemo or at the hospital,” Cr Ferrier.

The Rockhampton Airport ceased operations today with the last flight at 12.20pm. It is unknown when the airport will reopen.

Teys Meatworks Australia announced this morning they would be closed for the rest of the week.

"Teys is well prepared for incidents such as this and we expect to commence operations once it is safe for employees to return to work,” General Manager Operatrions of Teys Australia Rockampton, Wasantha Mudannayake said.

"Should the flood waters recede as anticipated, we plan to process cattle on Friday April 7 and commence boning operations on Monday April 10,” Wasantha said.

The Bureau has confirmed residents of the Banana shire are safe with the Dawson river Knebworth steady at 12.38 metres and flood levels are being maintained for the lower Dawson as the Mackenzie river has high flows.

The Dawson River at Baralaba and the Don River at Rannes have both fallen below minor flood level at 4.0 metres for the Dawson and 6.0 metres for the Dee.

Topics:  dawson river ex-cylone debbie rockhampton flood 2017 yeppen south bridge

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