ALTERING COURSE: Mt Sylvia property owner Kevin Quinn shows how the 2013 floods have altered the landscape along Blackfellow Creek forever.
ALTERING COURSE: Mt Sylvia property owner Kevin Quinn shows how the 2013 floods have altered the landscape along Blackfellow Creek forever. Kerry Oneill

Help for Mt Sylvia vital: Warner

HARD-earned lessons after two major flood events in Mt Sylvia have not been applied, according to Mt Sylvia farmer Kevin Quinn.

Mr Quinn said the millions of dollars spent on restoration works and the realignment of Blackfellow Creek near his property had not addressed the situation, but added to the danger faced by farmers downstream.

"In an attempt to alter the flow of the creek, some farms have better protection, but a handful of farms where the flow is directed will be washed away in a large flood event," he said.

Mr Quinn said much of his own farm was in danger of ending up in Moreton Bay, after it lost about four in the Australia Day flood event, after which much of the topsoil from Lockyer Valley farms ended up in the Brisbane River, threatening drinking water supplies.

"Basically they are altering the natural flow of Blackfellow Creek, which is something SEQ Catchments warned about in August 2011," he said.

Mr Quinn's calls have been backed by SEQ Catch- ments CEO Simon Warner.

Mr Warner said there were numerous studies commissioned by the state Labor government after 2011.

He said SEQ Catchments was not invited to be part of the decision-making process, but had since provided input into the process after the 2013 event.

"Our view was that they needed to take a good look at the aligning of Mt Sylvia Rd," he said.

Mr Warner said with the works undertaken at present, there was substantial risk to infrastructure in the area. He added that the risks "increased substantially" downstream to Harms Bridge and beyond.

"We recommended the bends be kept in the creek," he said.

"The extra one kilometre of straight section of the creek will further increase flow velocity and power."

Mr Warner added people downstream from Mr Quinn's property at Mt Sylvia "have every right to be concerned" should another flood event occur, with Blackfellow Creek being identified in studies "as one of the top two creeks in Australia, measured for flow rate and power in a flood event".

"Government cannot afford to keep ignoring the opinion of people who have lived in the region for generations," he said.


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