Weather wreaks havoc in the Far North
BREAKING NEWS: THE Bruce Highway has been re-opened but is down to a single lane through Tully and Cardwell with delays expected in both areas.
The road had initially been cut in two sections on either side of Tully and also just south of Cardwell, but was re-opened this afternoon.
Motorists are urged to proceed with caution.
The Bureau of Meteorology was earlier predicting damaging winds, with gusts to 90 km/h, heavy rainfall, and likely flash flooding will hit the North Tropical Coast and Tablelands, Herbert and Lower and Burdekin and remaining parts of the Peninsula district today.
Six hour rainfall accumulations of 100 to 200 mm were possible.
This heavy rain may also worsen the existing flood situation in areas with flood warnings current across parts of north Queensland.
Locations which may be affected include Weipa, Coen, Port Douglas, Cairns, Innisfail, Townsville, Bowen, Proserpine and Mackay.
Meanwhile, train services in the region were also affected by continuing poor weather with the line between Cairns and Townsville closed.
Heavy rain on the Kuranda Range has forced the cancellation of all services of the Kuranda Scenic Railway today.
The Cairns Tilt Train scheduled to depart Cairns today will now commence from Townsville due to flooding on roads between Cairns and Townsville.
The northbound Sunlander service which departed Brisbane yesterday will terminate in Townsville instead of Cairns.
Ergon Energy hope to have power restored in the Cape York communities of Mapoon, Napranum and Aurukun today after it was cut during Cyclone Oswald yesterday.
One crew was able to fly into Weipa yesterday on a commercial flight and an Ergon spokesperson said a further three were flying in today.
Around 500 customers had been affected by the power cuts, with crews also working to restore power to a telecommunications facility at Aurukun.
Road access to Tully was earlier completely cut after flooding caused the Bruce Highway to close at both ends of the town.
The highway was shut at both Dean Rd and Banyan Creek for some time.
Police are also warning motorists to drive with care and obey all road closure signs and warnings, and are urging people to be patient, consider alternative routes or delay travel where needed.
CURRENT ROAD CLOSURES & ADVICE (7.30am January 23):
CLOSURE/DELAYS – Kuranda Range (One lane closed to vehicles heading to Cairns at Rainforestation due to tree across road, Main Roads attending, expect delays for at least 1-2 hours)
CLOSED – Foxton Bridge, Mossman (Bridge flooded, emergency services attempting to retrieve a semi submerged vehicle, occupants escaped unharmed)
CLOSED -Bruce Highway at Ingham (Flooding of Seymour River, road closed to all traffic)
CAUTION – Mossman Mount Molloy Road (Road currently open however subject to flashing flooding. Bushy Creek at approximately 600mm and rising)
CAUTION – Silkwood Japoon Rd (Road currently open however subject to flash flooding, do not attempt to navigate road if flooded)
CLOSED/DELAYS - Tully Mission Beach Road (Currently closed due to flash flooding)
CLOSED – Burke Developmental Road, Highbury Tablelands (Closed from 44kms East of Dunbar to Palmerville Rd due to flooding)
CLOSED – Burke Developmental Road, Howitt-Carpentaria Shire (Closed to all vehicles from Walkers Creek to Capentaria boundary due to flooding)
CAUTION – Peninsula Developmental Road, Coen to Weipa (Road subject to 5 tonne GVM limit due to saturated pavements, do no attempt to navigate flooded roads)
CAUTION – Peninsula Developmental Road, Laura to Coen, Cook Shire (Road subject to 5 tonne GVM limit due to saturated pavements, Laura Bridge (North) currently closed due to flooding)
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