Sapphire residents wake to rising floodwaters
Cars and equipment are sitting in metres of floodwaters after Sapphire received a deluge of rain in the early hours of Wednesday morning, prompting a major flood.
Emergency services have spent the morning rescuing people from the roofs of houses and cars, with all rescues successful and no injuries reported.
All roads to Rubyvale and Sapphire have now been closed and drivers are being urged to not attempt to drive the roads.
The roads are not expected to be open for a number of hours.
An evacuation alert was issued by the Bureau of Meteorology just before 5am as Retreat Creek rose rapidly.
Warning sirens were heard by Sapphire residents around 3am.
Retreat Creek which surrounds the southern end of Sapphire rose nearly 10 metres in a few hours.
It was reported up to 250mm of rain fell overnight, which it is said to be the most in a decade.
Mount Ball near Rubyvale recorded 235mm overnight.
Residents in low lying homes and properties have been evacuated.
Around 4.15am a vehicle and persons were recovered from floodwaters in Sapphire Central.
A report was made around 5am that the river broke the banks at Graves Hill Rd and water was getting into cabins.
ROADS CLOSED AT 9AM WEDNESDAY MARCH 17:
Capella Road, The Gemfields
Capella Rubyvale Road, Carbine Creek
Makonda Road, Theresa Creek
Dawson Developmental Road, Mantuan Downs
Rolleston Springsure Road (Dawson Highway), Albinia
Dawson Developmental Road, Springsure / Windeyer
Anakie Sapphire Road, The Gemfields