Motorists ignoring ‘if it’s flooded, forget it’ message

QFES is urging motorists to steer clear of flooded roads, after severe storms on Wednesday night resulted in crews being called to two swiftwater rescues near Charters Towers.


Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, Northern Region Assistant Commissioner David Hermann said it was disappointing to see motorists entering floodwater, despite emergency services warning not to.


“I can not be more clear on this – if it’s flooded, forget it,” he said.


“We have teams of specially trained swiftwater firefighters across the region ready to help, but these rescues can be incredibly dangerous for our crews.


“We want motorists to ensure they aren’t putting themselves at risk.


“Check the status of roads before travelling and if you do encounter a flooded area do not enter, either in a vehicle or on foot.


“Floodwaters are unforgiving and you have no way of knowing what dangers are lurking underneath – a road could be blocked by debris or washed away and chances are you won’t know about the hazard until it’s too late.”

SES Regional Manager Daryl Camp said SES crews spent the night directing traffic away from flooded roads near Charters Towers.


“Thankfully we have not had reports of any injury or severe damage resulting from last night’s storm, but it is imperative everyone is prepared,” he said.


“The best way to ensure your safety and minimal damage to your property is to prepare well in advance of a disaster.


“Check the condition of your roof, and clean gutters and downpipes so water can drain away as quickly.


“Wind gusts can send outdoor items like trampolines or furniture hurtling down the street or into neighbouring properties, so these items need to be secured.


“Storms, cyclones and flooding are an unavoidable part of life in Queensland’s north, especially around this time of year.


“The community needs to ensure they keep up to date with warnings from the Bureau of Meteorology and prepare accordingly.”


6 December 2018.