Northern tropical Queensland is bracing for more flooding as forecasters warn daily rainfall totals could reach 300mm in some areas over the next few days.
The state’s weather bureau says a trough in the Coral Sea has brought hundreds of millimetres of rain to the region over the past 24 hours, and more is on the way.
Rainfall totals of between 100-200mm fell between Cairns and South MissionBeach, with heavier totals of between 200-260mm in Innisfail, Babinda and Tully.
Horn Island, in the Torres Strait, also received about 150mm in the last 24 hours, associated with a weak tropical low in the region.
And for racegoers in Cairns, 150mm alone fell at the Cairns racecourse, since 9am on Sunday.
“Just when you thought the wet season was over, Mother Nature had other ideas,” one local news media outlet wrote on social media on Monday afternoon.
At 2pm on Monday, the bureau issued a flood watch for the north tropical coast between Cooktown and Ingham.
“Showers are likely to remain enhanced or even increase about the north-east tropics through the day today, particularly overnight into Tuesday as a trough in the Coral Sea approaches and potentially moves onto the coast,” BOM forecaster Kimba Wong said.
“Daily rainfall totals of 100 to 150mm are likely, and isolated totals up to 300mm are possible for the next couple of days.
“At the moment we do have strong wind warnings for the Cairns and Townsville coastal waters today, just with some stronger winds in the vicinity of that trough in the Coral Sea.”
She said conditions were not likely to ease until later in the week.
“At this stage conditions are expected to gradually ease from Wednesday though not clearing completely,” she said.
“More localised heavy falls may persist through Wednesday and Thursday.”