‘Only halfway’: Critical warning with 300mm-plus to come
An extreme weather system that has dumped in excess of 500mm on parts of southeast Queensland in the past 24 hours is expected to peak early tomorrow morning.
Hundreds of calls for help have been made as wild weather continues to lash southeast Queensland but emergency services warn the worst is yet to come.
There have been reports of landslides in northern NSW while warnings have been issued for extremely dangerous surf conditions.
Emergency Services Minister Mark Ryan and his Queensland counterpart Greg Leach will provide an update on the conditions and response activities will provide an update on conditions at 3.30pm.
Communities across southeast Queensland are being warned to stay away from floodwater and avoid unnecessary travel.
A flood warning has been issued for the Albert and Logan rivers, with their catchment areas now saturated with renewed river level rises expected with forecast rainfall.
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate says he expects the worst of the extreme weather system to hit at 2am Monday and continue until at least 11am.
Some parts could be hit by another 300mm, which could coincide with king tides.
Cr Tate said areas on the Gold Coast most at risk included Tallebudgera, Currumbin Valley and the hinterland.
Twenty caravans at Murwillumbah in northern NSW have been evacuated and residents moved to higher ground.
It comes after parts of southeast Queensland have recorded more than 500mm since Saturday morning.
"We're only halfway," Cr Tate said.
"We haven't quite dodged a bullet yet, but we're bunkered down and making sure we watch and remain alert."
Cr Tate said there was potential for evacuations if flooding escalated and disaster centres would be activated when necessary.
"That decision will be made well in advance."
Nearby, a number of horses remain stranded in floodwaters with emergency crews unable to reach them.
The Queensland Fire and Emergency Service has warned most of the severe weather is expected tonight and into Monday.
It comes after almost 300mm of rain was dumped on parts of the southeast in just six hours overnight, while waves reached up to 10m off the coast.
Meteorologist Jonathan How described the overnight rainfall as "relentless" and said the weekend's falls were the most significant rainfall event since February.
The Queensland Government's Brisbane wave monitoring website recording the huge 10m swell before midnight off the shore of North Stradbroke's Point Lookout.
The Gold Coast saw rainfall totals of up to 475mm in the 24 hours to 9am Sunday while the worst of the heavy rain was yet to reach Logan, Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast.
LATEST RAINFALL TOTALS
Upper Springbrook - 481mm
Currumbin Creek - 370mm
Upper Tallebudgera - 350mm
Lower Springbrook - 344.4mm
Springbrook - 318mm
Binna Burra - 257mm
Bonogin - 173mm
Bli Bli - 75mm
Picnic Point - 71mm
Brisbane - 36.6mm
Maroochydore - 43mm
Redland City Council has established self serve sandbagging stations in preparation for forecasted heavy rain, damaging winds and abnormally high tides from late tonight, Sunday and Monday.
Meteorologist Rosa Hoff said rain would increase in the late afternoon.
"We're expecting to continue to see rain and showers amongst southeast Queensland today. We did have a period of very intense rainfall from about midnight until 6am overnight, that has since eased back to the current level of showers and rain," she said.
"It's likely that we'll see rainfall pick up from late this afternoon, into this evening and overnight and we could potentially see intense rainfall over the southeast overnight tonight from about Hervey Bay all the way down to New South Wales."
With temperatures expected to remain cool, Ms Hoff said there was a flood watch for the entire southeast region.
Further rainfall totals of up to 150mm are predicted on the Gold Coast, while Brisbane could see another 80mm fall, and on the Sunshine Coast up to 120mm is predicted.
"We do currently have a flood watch, which is current for pretty much all regions from Hervey Bay down to the Gold Coast and then over the border in New South Wales," Ms Hoff said.
"We've had an upper trough stall over southeast Queensland yesterday and into today, l now that's slowly driving the development of a coastal trough which is what's going to reintensify our rainfall later today."
As at 8am the State Emergency Service had received 240 requests for assistance across the state since 6pm last night.
A Queensland Fire and Emergency Service spokeswoman said the majority of the calls were for the Gold Coast area but there have been several calls for assistance in Ipswich and Logan as well.
She said most of the calls were for tarp requests and leaking roofs after a massive deluge of rain fell overnight.
Flash flood warnings are in place stretching from the Gold Coast, through Brisbane and up to the Sunshine Coast as rapidly worsening wild weather lashes the region.
The Bureau of Meteorology warns heavy rain, dangerous winds, abnormally high tides and dangerous surf will continue across Sunday.
The Queensland Government's Brisbane wave monitoring website recording a huge 10m swell before midnight off the shore of North Stradbroke's Point Lookout.
All Gold Coast beaches are today closed, as are many Sunshine Coast beaches.
Upper Springbrook recorded 475mm of rain in the 24 hours to 9am Sunday, 279mm of which fell within the 6 hours until 1am.
Tomewin has recorded 370mm in the 24 hours to 9am Sunday, 274mm was observed within the 6 hours to 1am.
Currumbin Creek has recorded 378mm until 7am Sunday, 264mm was observed within the 6 hours until 1am.
Tallebudgera saw 378mm fall until 9am Sunday while Binna Burra recorded 254mm, Tallai received 149mm and Carrara had 134mm.
Many areas on the Gold Coast are now flooded.
Hardy's Road has been closed to all traffic in Bonogin while flash flooding has impacted Somerset Drive between Bonogin Road and Gold Coast Springbrook Road in Mudgeeraba.
SEQ Water said the Little Nerang Dam was spilling and warned of potential safety hazards downstream.
In the Logan-Albert region, O'Reillys saw 276mm dumped from 9am Saturday to 9am Sunday, while Darlington received 199mm.
Further north, Inala saw 70mm fall in the 24 hours to 9am Sunday, Calamvale had 69mm dumped, Oxley Creek saw 62mm fall, Greenbank had 58mm, Archerfield saw 56mm and Forest Lake received 53mm. Brisbane city saw 15mm fall in that time frame.
Surf Life Saving Queensland said beaches at Alexandra Headland, Boardwalk, Bribie Island, Coolum, Kawana, Kings Beach, Marcoola, Maroochydore, Mooloolaba, Mudjimba, Peregian, Sunrise, Sunshine and Twin Waters were all closed.
Abnormally high tides exceeding the highest tide of the year are expected to develop about the southeast Queensland coast on Sunday morning's high tide.
Dangerous surf conditions are also expected to develop during Sunday and in combination with the abnormally high tides could lead to significant coastal erosion about areas exposed to wave action.
The BOM warns locations in the firing line of the severe weather include Gold Coast, Brisbane, Moreton Island, North Stradbroke Island, Sunshine Coast and adjacent hinterland areas, Fraser Island, Caboolture, Cleveland, Redcliffe, Jimboomba, Beaudesert and Springbrook.
The worst of the weather system is expected later today.
OVERNIGHT: Southeast warned as deluge threatens
Weather experts are warning southeast Queenslanders not to be complacent, as warnings of flash flooding and severe weather look set to come to fruition today.
A severe weather warning from the Bureau of Meteorology has joined existing flood and hazardous surf condition alerts, as a system that already dropped 180mm on northern NSW continues north.
Forecasters say it is expected to hit Queensland's southeast today, with isolated falls of 150mm forecast from Coolangatta to the Sunshine Coast.
More than 60mm fell in just an hour on the Gold Coast as a large system moves over the southeast.
Hinze Dam on the Gold Coast Hinterland recorded 63mm between 8pm and 9pm on Saturday night, while Coolangatta copped 90mm in 12 hours from 9am Saturday.
Coomera recorded 43mm between 7pm and 8pm.
A flood watch from the Bureau of Meteorology has warned all significant catchments along the southeast are at risk.
A flood watch has been issued for parts of the state stretching from Fraser Island to the Tweed with water catchments, including the Brisbane River, likely to be affected on Sunday and Monday.
BoM meteorologist Harry Clark said minor flooding is likely, with river rises which could possibly affect transport routes.
"Because this rainfall is so dependent on exactly where the low forms it's quite difficult to say exactly where but really anywhere from the Sunshine Coast down to the Gold Coast is at risk," Mr Clark said.
"Anywhere between 100mm and 150mm are possible in isolated high totals with some fairly widespread rain, which is when we're likely to see the most damaging falls."
BoM have warned people to stay away from beaches with dangerous surf conditions, coastal erosion and inundation likely.
"Its almost like a trifecta of things coming together, we do have some tide shifts so the normal tide is really high, combined with gale force winds and some dangerous surf as well," Mr Clark said.
"It's a particularly good day to stay away from the beach and even those higher tides getting in to the tidal creeks and catchments around the usual spots like Windsor and Albion that tend to get inundated will be at risk as well."
QFES issued a reminder for people to prepare for the weather event by tying down loose items, having an emergency plan ready to clear gutters and remove debris from the home.
It comes as parts of the state yesterday recorded over 90mm of rain in 24 hours, with the Sunshine Coast and North Stradbroke receiving 93mm and 91mm respectively.
Meanwhile parts of the Gold Coast recorded over 30mm and Brisbane recorded just under 20mm.
North Queensland also continued to be drenched through ongoing monsoon conditions, with scenes out of Julia Creek showing backyards normally sunburnt completely flooded with water.
Originally published as 440mm rain dumped as wild weather lashes SEQ