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'Giant hailstones': Severe storms threaten flash flooding in SEQ


A line of severe thunderstorms, threatening “giant hailstones”, flash flooding and strong winds, is approaching urban areas of south-east Queensland after causing havoc on the Darling Downs and Lockyer Valley.

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The Bureau of Meteorology said “very dangerous thunderstorms” with hail measuring up to five centimetres were detected on the weather radar near Esk and the area northwest of Esk at around 3.15 pm.

It warned the storms were bearing down on the Moreton Bay area and would affect Caboolture, Beerburrum and Woodford by 4:30 pm and Redcliffe and the area southwest of Caloundra and northern Bribie Island by 5:00 pm.

Giant hail was likely between Woodford and Redcliffe.

“Giant hailstones, damaging winds and heavy rainfall that may lead to flash flooding are likely.”

It said  five centimetre hail was reported south of Toogoolawah at 3:20pm.

The bureau said other severe thunderstorms were detected near Jimna, Wacol, Upper Brookfield, Enoggera Reservoir and Greenbank.

“They are forecast to affect Brisbane CBD, Beenleigh, Logan City and Borumba Dam by 5:00 pm and Cleveland, Nambour, Mapleton and Yandina by 5:30 pm,” it said.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services urged people in affected areas to take cover and stay off the roads.

Earlier the bureau said storms were on their way into the Brisbane region and urged residents to take action to protect themselves and their property and seek shelter.

The storms have already left hundreds of households without power at Murphy’s Creek and Withcott at the foot of the Toowoomba Range.

The bureau said the storm front had reached Helidon at 2:30 pm and was moving east to affect Laidley, Gatton and the area around Esk by 3:00 pm before moving closer to coastal areas.

“Damaging winds, large hailstones and heavy rainfall that may lead to flash flooding are likely,” the bureau said.

“A more general severe thunderstorm warning is also current for parts of the Central Highlands and Coalfields, Wide Bay and Burnett, Darling Downs and Granite Belt and Southeast Coast districts.”







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