Qld’s ‘summer of disasters’ continues with life-threatening floods and possible new cyclone

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Queensland residents are being urged to brace for life-threatening severe weather events in what’s being hailed as the “summer of disasters” in the storm-battered state.

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning for western parts of the state as ex-Tropical Cyclone Kirrily continues to wreak havoc with intense downpours.

Residents in the towns surrounding Burketown and Mount Isa could be drenched by daily rainfall totals of more than 300mm, bringing with it the risk of life-threatening flash flooding.

There have been terrifying reports of potential rainfalls of up to 1000mm for some of the areas in Queensland’s northwest.

Damaging wind gusts of up to 110 km/h are possible over the Gulf Country as the system moves slowly south on Friday.

Emergency services have been overloaded with calls for assistance since Tropical Cyclone Kirrily made landfall in Queensland last month.

The State Emergency Service said it had received 1400 requests related to the storm devastation, the majority of which were in the Townsville area.

Meanwhile, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services have been called to 40 flood-related incidents in southern parts of the state.

A spokesperson said several of those calls involved rescuing people from flood zones.

While the devastation wrought by ex-Tropical Cyclone Kirrily is far from over, a new tropical cyclone could be brewing over the eastern coast of the state.

Weather forecasters predict a low-pressure system over the Coral Sea could turn into a cyclone over the next week.

It would be the third cyclone to hit the Sunshine State since December last year, marking this summer as the most active cyclone season in five years.

In addition to flash flooding and a looming cyclone, Queensland residents will also have to contend with a heatwave over the coming days.

Much of the state is expected to swelter through temperatures in the 30s over the weekend and into next week.

Sky News Weather meteorologist Alison Osborne said it was “quite unusual” to have so many severe weather events happening “all at once”.

“(It’s) certainly being driven by a number of factors, particularly warmer ocean temperatures at the moment,” she explained.

The confluence of natural disasters has left many residents in Queensland isolated, with major highways cut off, train services interrupted, and residents in fear of being cut off.

Mount Isa resident Dan Ballard told the Courier-Mail that supermarket shelves had been stripped bare as residents tried to prepare for the worst.

He told the masthead he hoped retailers would organise supplies to be flown in because the freight routes had been cut off by floodwaters.

“There’s a strong reaction when there’s rain because we’re so prone (to the) impacts, and we’re isolated,” he said.

“I’ve never heard of those (rainfall) figures in western Queensland for a year, (let) alone a month or days.”

Read related topics:BrisbaneWeather