The main purpose of this post is to share some photos sent to me taken by my cousin’s brother-in-law in Toowoomba. But first some context.
Paul Norton described the topography of Toowoomba thus:
Just to give people some idea of what seems to have happened in Toowoomba, the city of Toowoomba is located just on the west side of the Great Dividing Range. As you travel from Brisbane to Toowoomba, the road begins climbing slowly after about Grantham and Helidon, then climbs steeply west of Withcott before cresting the range at a bit under 700 metres. The eastern suburbs on Toowoomba are built on the western slope of the range, whilst the CBD is located in something of a hollow at the bottom of this slope, with gentler slopes to north and south. The “cloudburst” (to used Brian’s word on the older thread) on the range looks to have basically been funnelled into the CBD by the topography.
Further to my previous comment, the range forms a neat half-circle around Toowoomba on the east side, centered on the CBD.
That half-circle, according to the Federal member for the area Ian Macfarlane, is the rim of an old volcano, which has eroded away to the west, so the main street forms a virtual gully that drains away to the plains and into the Condamine.
The cause of the floods was a sudden downpour, described on TV as “nothing much” on the radar, but delivered 150 mm (six inches on the old scale) in about half an hour. The result was like a raging gully through the CBD and a vast amount of water down into the Lockyer Valley to the east.
So here are the Toowoomba pics. The first is a long shot of Russell Street:
Here are the flood waters at the railway crossing:
Followed by another street scene:
The next is a close-up of a building in the background of the second photo. We get a view inside someone’s home:
I saw the occupant interviewed on TV. The torrent ripped away the side wall of his home exposing the inside with sagging floor.
Next we see the contents of a furniture store floating down the street:
Here’s a car wrapped around a post:
And another one somewhat the worse for wear:
That’s it folks. What we see is a raging torrent that came and went fairly quickly in a place where no-one expected to see running water.
The Courier Mail has quite an interesting home video of the incident here.
if you are discomforted by laughter towards the end, remember people laugh for reasons other than that they think something is funny. In fact I heard an extended interview once on someone who had done research on why people laugh. “Because it’s funny” from memory amounted to some 14% or one in seven of the instances.