News

Flood water message pours in

 Warwick firefighters, Brett Bender, Ian Barnden, Michael Coombes and Greg Stewart.
Warwick firefighters, Brett Bender, Ian Barnden, Michael Coombes and Greg Stewart. Georja Ryan

A YEAR has almost gone by since the devastation of the 2011 floods and the Queensland Fire and Rescue team is preaching one important message: If it's flooded, forget it.

A new mobile billboard hit the streets of Warwick yesterday to reinforce Swift Water's message to not drive through flood waters.

The billboard will be placed in strategic spots along the Cunningham and New England Hwy's before moving throughout the region.

Swift Water is a training regime, preparing officers for rapid water and vertical rescues.

QFRS community liaison's Di Warr said the billboard was only one phase of many for the Swift Water campaign and the idea was to ensure no one dabbled with death if a flood situation were to arise.

"If you're going anywhere over the holidays, check road and weather conditions - don't take anything for granted - it's not worth the risk," Ms Warr said.

"Unfortunately, we have in recent weeks had people going into flooded waters and we can't stress strongly enough - don't do it."

QFRS firefighter Greg Stewart said floodwaters were more dangerous than most people perceived.

"As soon as it floods, people think it's a water park and get out their body boards. But if there was a manhole that had shifted, they could get sucked straight under," Mr Stewart said.

"In training, we get pushed up to an object by extreme water pressure and it's virtually damn impossible to get off.

"People surely under-estimate the force of water," he said.

"I actually lost a friend of mine when I was 10 ... he was coming home from school and there were floodwaters, and his bike slipped off the side of the road and he went straight into a stormwater drain.

"It doesn't take much to kill you," he said.

All Warwick station firefighters completed their Swift Water training and three have advanced to instructor level.

Topics:  fire and rescue, flood water, rain, warning, weather



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