Surf lifesaver John Hamrey.
Surf lifesaver John Hamrey. CHRIS ISON

Wet weather whipping

AFTER spending the day among the worst weather he’d seen in years, lifeguard John Hamrey was looking forward to a hot shower yesterday afternoon.

The Yeppoon coast line copped a hammering as ex-tropical cyclone Olga unleashed heavy rain and destructive winds across Central Queensland.

Early yesterday the Bureau of Meteorology also issued a warning for people in the Central Highlands and Capricornia areas to brace for possible flashing flooding.

The town of Barcaldine was hit with the most rain, receiving 121mm overnight on Saturday.

As a result the nearby Landsborough Highway was closed due to flooding at 9am, about 30km west of Barcaldine.

Rockhampton seemed to miss out on most of the rain, only receiving a total of 21.6mm to 3pm but it did feel the force of the strong winds.

The Fitzroy River may also approach minor flooding levels this week.

Mr Hamrey, Yeppoon Surf Lifesaving Club president, said Yeppoon’s main beach was closed between 9am and 1pm due to its dangerous conditions.

He said a strong rip formed in front of the club house and a southerly sweep pushed waves up against the rocks, making conditions hazardous even for the surfers.

The shocking weather was also combined with the highest tide the coast had seen in nine years.

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) website said cyclone Olga had caused a very active monsoon trough to form, which moved southwest from Mackay’s coast yesterday.

The trough mostly impacted between Longreach and Emerald before it drifted slowly to the southwest last night.

A flood warning is current for Funnel Creek, Connors River and the Lower Isaac River.

A BOM spokesman said floodwaters would cause small river rises downstream along the Mackenzie River below the Isaac River junction and in the Fitzroy River during this week.

It’s expected the river levels in the Mackenzie and Fitzroy rivers will remain below minor flood level, but higher levels are possible while rain continues in the catchment.

Police yesterday urged drivers to travel with extreme caution, limiting non-essential travel in flood-affected areas where possible, drive to the condition of the road and obey road closure signs.

Yesterday a State Emergency Service spokeswoman said crews had not been called out in the Rockhampton region for rain-related issues.

Contact the SES on 132 500 for emergency assistance if required.

Keep up-to-date with the latest weather information for the Rockhampton region.

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Where it fell...

Rainfall from 9am Saturday to 3pm Sunday:

  • Anakie - 71mm
  • Barcaldine - 121mm
  • Blackall - 72mm
  • Carmila -178mm
  • Clermont - 80mm
  • Emerald - 66mm
  • Gladstone - 12.8mm
  • Longreach - 79.8mm
  • Moranbah - 91mm
  • Rockhampton - 21.6mm
  • Rolleston - 69mm
  • Springsure - 71mm
  • St Lawrence - 208mm
  • Yeppoon - 24mm

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