Flood gauges damaged in 2022 weather events in Ipswich replaced

09 September 2022

The 2022 floods recovery repairs continue in Ipswich with new flood gauges being installed at two hard-hit areas, Colleges Crossing and Karalee.

Ipswich City Council, with funding assistance from the State Government, replaced the gauges at where the equipment had been destroyed by the weather event in February.

Local Resilience and Recovery Group Chairperson and Division 4 Councillor Kate Kunzelmann said the new gauges have been designed to be more resilient to future water damage in the area.

“Ipswich City Council lost three of its flood gauges during the recent extreme weather events in late February 2022,” Cr Kunzelmann said.

“These two sites were completely inundated with floodwaters, resulting in catastrophic failure of all monitoring hardware.

“Should another such extreme event occur, it is highly likely that these sites would again become inundated.

"To prevent this, council extended the tower poles from 3m to 4.5m, providing an additional 1.5m of freeboard flood protection to the site.

“It is critical that installations can withstand major flood events so that accurate data capture can be maintained, and the life of project costs are minimised.”

Local Resilience and Recovery Group Deputy Chairperson and Division 4 Councillor Russell Milligan said council had looked at several options to replace the damaged gauges.

“Our installations included excavation of new foundations, trenching and pipework to the river, river installation and bracing as well as the supply of consumable materials,” Cr Milligan said.

“The benefit from this type of structure is higher flood immunity, less vandalism potential and potentially better communications due to elevation, and better solar shading immunity due to foliage growth.

“This network of gauges is a critical asset, and the reliable operation of which can prevent significant and often critical damage to property and life.

“These gauges will help council supply accurate information to residents and these new gauges ensure a more robust and reliable system.”

The State Government’s Queensland Reconstruction Authority approved funding of $65,428 for the gauge at Colleges Crossing and $66,685 for the gauge at Karalee.

Assistance was provided through the jointly-funded Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).