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South East Queensland Warned of Dangers of Flood Water

28 February 2022


Following the major weather event across South East Queensland over the weekend, which has included heavy rainfall and flooding from Maryborough down to Northern New South Wales, health and safety must remain a key priority for the whole community.

Master Plumbers’ Association of Queensland (MPAQ) is warning people not to become complacent when faced with rising flood waters on the street and in the home.

MPAQ President, Mr Kent Vickers, said “standing flood waters can spread infectious diseases, contain chemical hazards, and cause injuries. I urge people who are experiencing flooding in their home or local community to listen to the most recent directives from the Queensland Government.”

Despite the rain easing on Monday, multiple major flood warnings remain in place across South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales due the rising levels in many rivers.

Mr Vickers said resident’s need to take steps to protect themselves, their families, and their homes:

  • If you haven’t already done so, evacuate areas that are subject to flooding.
  • If you do need to evacuate, turn off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve.
  • Do not drink flood water, or use it to wash dishes, brush teeth, or wash/prepare food.
  • If you are evacuated, return to your home only after local authorities have said it is safe to do so.
  • Wear protective clothing if cleaning sewage as it contains harmful microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses and protozoa.

Mr Vickers also explained that checking the property’s plumbing, drainage, gas, and roofing needs to be a priority after such events if public health is to be safeguarded.

“When the post-flood clean up starts, I would urge people to pay particular attention to those key plumbing issues that can impact health and safety.”

Mr Vickers said residents need to contact a licensed Master Plumber to check on:

  • Drainage or septic overflows
  • Silted or blocked drains
  • Damage to gas regulators and/or pipework
  • Solar water heater or PV panels on roofs may be damaged during weather events
  • Roof/skylight damage or leaks and damage to metal or tiled roofs. 
  • Tank water and other alternate water systems should also be checked for debris/contamination.
  • Gutter blockages – leaves/debris

Mr Vickers said residents will also need to be cautious of downpipes that are connected to underground storm water drains that may be blocked with silt. Any further rain may overflow from the gutters as the water cannot drain away, flooding the house.

In the case of significant damage, where you may need to replace plumbing fixtures and/or fittings, people should be mindful that all plumbing work will need to be done by a licensed person.

Residents and home owners can contact MPAQ from Monday to Friday on 07 3273 0800 to locate a licensed Master Plumber in their area or visit www.mpaq.com.au/find-a-plumber.

Consumers are also being told to beware of scammers offering repairs or services in the wake of the wild weather and should call a Master Plumber as they hold the appropriate plumbing QBCC licenses.

- ENDS -

For further information contact:

Penny Cornah
Executive Director
Master Plumbers’ Association of Queensland
0418 724 457

Ernie Kretschmer
Technical Services Manager
Master Plumbers’ Association of Queensland
0418 780 351

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