| Cyclone unlikely, but more rain on the way
| Friday, February 6, 2009
|Ingham residents may be spared a second cyclonic battering with a monsoon trough expected to weaken over the north in the coming days.
However, a tropical low, forming 25 kilometres off Cairns beaches, is expected to drench the already sodden regions south of the sugar town today and possibly flood Townsville.
"We're fearing that this low will deliver substantial rain and wind on top of a king tide on Sunday," Townsville councillor Dale Last said.
Mr Last said Townsville residents in low-lying areas were preparing for the worst.
"We've given away literally thousands upon thousands of sand bags," he said.
"We're telling people who had water come onto their properties with the last king tide that it's going to be even worse this time."
A brief reprieve from torrential rains yesterday afforded flood-stricken residents in Ingham the chance to survey the damage.
"Even if a cyclone doesn't form, moderate to heavy falls caused by the monsoon trough will be possible on Saturday between about Innisfail to Ayr, and extending inland into the Northern Goldfields and Upper Flinders areas," the Bureau of Meteorology said on its website.
"Elsewhere in the state, expect monsoonal showers over Cape York Peninsula and parts of the North Tropical Coast."
Premier Anna Bligh yesterday surveyed the devastated region and spoke to 50 residents living in emergency accommodation at the Ingham High School.
"The place is totally water-logged and we have more heavy rain on the way," Ms Bligh said.
"The water has receded here by about one metre...but there could be worse on the way."
Flood warnings are in place for the Diamantina and Georgina rivers and Eyre Creek in the west and Gulf rivers including the Nicholson, Leichhardt, Flinders, Norman and Gilbert. On the east coast, the Burdekin, Herbert, Tully and Murray rivers are in flood.
Dengue fever cases in north Queensland have increased beyond 300, with warnings now posted United Kingdom travel websites about the epidemic.
In Cairns, 266 cases of the mosquito-borne disease have been confirmed and another 47 people have been infected in Townsville.
|posted by Moderator Londen time 8:11 AM