Ipswich CBD looking North. Riverlink Shopping Centre. Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times
Ipswich CBD looking North. Riverlink Shopping Centre. Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times

THROWBACK: Ipswich inundated as river peaks in 2011 flood

IT HAS been nine years since the banks of the Bremer broke and the river swallowed up parts of the Ipswich CBD and its surrounds.

The city was on emergency alert as residents braced for river levels to peak at a predicted 22 metres - higher than levels recorded in the devastating 1974 floods.

Authorities in the city said levels didn't quite reach predicted levels, peaking at 19.5m instead.

Thousands of residents in low-lying suburbs fled their homes and flocked to evacuation centres as the Bremer River rose quickly.

The city was told to prepare for flood peaks expected to affect about one third of the city, with "devastating" impacts predicted.

Goodna was one of the worst affected areas in Ipswich and it had all the visible damage and mud to prove it.

 

The QT's front page on this day in 2011.
The QT's front page on this day in 2011.

 

In the days following the peak, The Queensland Times spoke with Dorothy Reddaway who had started cleaning her unit after waiting days to access it.

She had come back from staying at her daughter's house on higher ground to find her unit and contents destroyed.

"The water was way over the roof," she said.

"We came back and found other people's tables and chairs on my roof."

"The ceilings in every room have fallen in and the cupboards are all off the wall.

"Everything is an absolute mess and the smell is atrocious."

In the same street, Helen Glazewski had also walked into her house for the first time in days.

She knew she was coming back to a disaster zone, having spotted the top of her roof peeking out of the floodwater on Thursday.

 

Photo: Contributed
Photo: Contributed

 

The agony that came in the days, weeks and months following the event were some of the toughest in the region's history.

Residents and businesses lost everything and the smell of mud swamped the city.

As help from across the country started to arrive, the clean up began.

Despite nearly a decade passing, many residents are still dealing with the heartache and destruction of the 2011 floods.

Frank Beaumont is one of thousands of flood victims who are set to receive some compensation after the State Government decided it would not appeal a historic class action court victory.

"All we need now is Sunwater and Seqwater to follow the State Government's lead."