Minister flies over flood damage

THE State Government's second in command boarded a plane bound for the flood-stricken Darling Downs yesterday, but Paul Lucas had no time to see the devastation in Warwick from the ground.

Mayor Ron Bellingham confirmed Deputy Premier Paul Lucas and Minister for Police, Corrective Services and Emergency Services Neil Roberts were not able to make the drive into the Rose City from the airport and instead flew over.

Cr Bellingham said it was important for politicians to see the extent of the damage.

He said he was concerned the city was not listed as a disaster area.

“We need monetary support and we will need it fairly quickly to get ourselves out of damage mode,” Cr Bellingham said.

State Emergency Service figures sent to council yesterday afternoon highlighted the impact of the floods across the region. According to the statistics, 50 houses and 15 businesses were flooded in Warwick.

In Allora there were 12 flooded houses and one business, while in Killarney one house and eight businesses went under.

The SES was flat out with two helicopter airlifts, numerous boat rescues and assists and more than 50 stranded travellers in Warwick.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Gavin Holcombe said Warwick weather should be mostly fine until the weekend.

The Condamine River at Warwick peaked at 7.9 metres on Monday night, with the level falling to 6.5 metres at the time of press while Leslie Dam is at 88 per cent.

The SES and Southern Downs Regional Council have established helpline numbers and residents are urged to call the SES on 132500 or council on 46610300 for assistance.

As of last night the O.O. Madsen Bridge was re-opened, as was the New England Highway north of the Eight Mile, though only one lane operating at the bridge over Glengallan Creek.


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