Parents Wade Through Waters To Get Kids
A heavy two-day downpour has cut multiple roads and forced evacuations in north Queensland, with parents even having to wade through floodwaters to collect their children from a childcare centre.
In the space of six hours, the Bureau of Meteorology recorded 202mm of rain in Bluewater, northwest of Townsville, and warned of potential falls up to 350mm over the next 24 hours.
Flash flooding caused the Bruce Highway, south of Townsville, to be closed on Thursday morning.
Townsville's Ross River Dam has reached 70 per cent capacity, a jump of 55 per cent since the lows experienced in early January.
Two schools and three childcare centres are closed due to flooding - including one at Deeragun where parents waded through waters to get their kids - and an evacuation centre has been opened in Bluewater.
Extra water rescue crews have been deployed to the region, with a person rescued from the top of their car at Saunders Beach about 9am on Thursday.
Emergency services have attended numerous crashes include a semi-rollover at Roseneath, south of Townsville.
The SES has had more than 60 jobs in the region since 4pm on Wednesday.
Queensland Fire and Rescue Service Inspector Stephen Knight warned people not to drive through floodwaters and for parents to keep children out of causeways.
"The water can move up fast and trap kids," the Insp told AAP.
It's expected the wet weather will move to the west of the state in the coming days, with Townsville's rainfall set to gradually ease throughout Thursday.
Inspector Knight believes king tides on Thursday night and Friday morning could contribute to another wave of flash flooding.
Numerous flood watch warnings have been issued, with a major warning for the Haughton River Catchment near Giru which has hit 3m.
Giru and Cungulla residents have also been told to conserve water for the next 48 hours, due to debris blocking the water treatment plant.