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Well, I'll be dammed: Look what Debbie did for us

A photograph of Wappa Falls taken on March 30, 2017.
A photograph of Wappa Falls taken on March 30, 2017. Facebook Angie Brokenborough

ONLY one week ago, South East Queensland water authority was warning the region was about to enter "the drought readiness phase".

Dam levels on the Sunshine Coast had dropped to below 46% and across the 12 dams in the grid it was sitting at around 71%.

Seqwater issued its Drought Response Plan on March 24 with the warning once combined dam levels dropped below 70%, the region would officially enter the "drought readiness phase".

With traditionally the wettest season over, Seqwater advised it was "likely" the dam levels would drop below 70%.

"The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast below average rainfall for South East Queensland throughout autumn," Seqwater warned.

But then along came ex-tropical cyclone Debbie and dumped hundreds of millimetres of rain across the region.

By Sunday, April 2, Baroon Pocket's dam level had increased to 61.8% and many other dams in the region, including Wappa Dam were spilling.

Across the grid, the dam levels had increased to 78.9%.

A Seqwater spokeswoman said the rains had brought the region an extra six months' breathing room.

"It's added six months worth of drinking water to the overall grid," the spokeswoman said.

South East Queensland is known for going "really quickly from drought to flood".

But the majority of rainfall did not reach the Sunshine Coast's supply dams.

"The majority of rainfall fell on the Gold Coast and southern areas," the spokeswoman said.

"The Sunshine Coast didn't get as much as would have liked to."

Sunshine Coast Dam Levels on March 17 compared to March 24

Baroon Pocket : from 45.1% to 61.8%

Ewen Maddock: from 90% to spilling

Lake Macdonald: from 57.1% to spilling

North Pine: from 51.6% to 73.4%

Entire Grid: from 70.9% to 78.9%

Topics:  cyclone debbie dams water


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