The spillway at Awoonga Dam.
The spillway at Awoonga Dam. Mike Richards

No need to panic as Awoonga spills over again

DOZENS of people were at the Awoonga Dam lookout on Thursday morning as water spilled over for the first time in a year.

Benaraby locals Mr and Mrs Beale and Levi, 6, and Harley Beale, 7, it was the second time they'd witnessed the spillage.

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"The last time we saw it in this state was back in the 2013 floods," Mr Beale said.

"It's a pretty good sight so we thought we'd come take a look and bring the kids, who were eager to check it out."

Gladstone Area Water Board CEO Jim Grayson said the dam had spilled over several times since 2010.

"It was pretty likely that it was going to happen," he said.

"At these levels it is likely that Pikes Crossing will be cut off for a period of time."

At 7.40am on Friday Awoonga Dam was at 105% capacity, with the water level at 40.63m.

Although many residents fear the worst, Gladstone Mayor Gail Sellers is advising that the dam is coping with the deluge and water levels will continue to be monitored.

The spillway at Awoonga Dam on Thursday.
The spillway at Awoonga Dam on Thursday. Mike Richards GLA220115DAMN

"Awoonga Dam is overflowing the spillway and, based on the rainfall to date, and predicted falls of up to 200mm in the next 48 hours, a peak of about 42m can be expected," she said earlier.

"This is well below the 48.3m recorded on the Australia Day weekend two years ago."

However, Cr Sellers said residents were advised to take safety precautions, with heavy rain causing flooding and road closures throughout the region.

"While the dam's spill is not posing a threat to property at this point in time, it is still imperative that residents follow simple safety measures to ensure they stay safe during heavy rain and powerful wind gusts," she said.

Cr Sellers said council would implement its disaster management procedures should the situation deteriorate, but encouraged residents to do what they could to protect their properties from inundation, and to avoid any unnecessary travel.

"Residents should move their car under cover or away from trees, secure loose outdoor items around their homes, beware of fallen trees and powerlines and, if away from home, seek shelter, preferably indoors and away from trees," she said.

Sandbags can be obtained from the State Emergency Service or Bunnings Warehouse in Gladstone or, if need be, residents can make their own by filling garbage bags with sand or soil.

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