This brochure describes the flood
warning system operated by the Australian Government, Bureau of
Meteorology for the Moonie River. It includes reference information
which will be useful for understanding Flood Warnings and River Height
Bulletins issued by the Bureau's Flood Warning Centre during periods of
high rainfall and flooding.
The Moonie River basin is located in southwest Queensland and drains an area of approximately 14,050 square kilometres at Fenton. The largest tributary is Teelba Creek and flows into the Moonie River between Flinton and Mt Driven. This tributary, along with local streams running into the Moonie River upstream of Flinton, can contribute to major flooding following local heavy rainfall. Major flooding downstream can cause many thousands of hectares of low lying areas to be inundated, properties to be isolated and highways to be cut.
Flood records for Nindigully and Thallon date back to 1970 and 1950 respectively. The highest flood on record occurred in March 2010 when the river rose to a height of 4.65 metres at Nindigully and to 5.50 metres at Thallon. The figures below shows the significant flood peaks which have occurred at Nindigully and Thallon since records began.
The Bureau of Meteorology operates a flood warning system for the Moonie River basin based on a rainfall and river height observations network shown on the map. The network consists of a number of volunteer rainfall and river height observers who forward observations by telephone when the initial flood height has been exceeded at their station, as well as automatic telephone telemetry stations at Nindigully and Fenton, which are operated by the Department of Natural Resources and Mines.
The Bureau's Flood Warning Center issues Flood Warnings and River Height Bulletins for the Moonie River during flood events. Qualitative flood forecasts are issued whenever widespread minor flood levels are likely to be exceeded.
The Western Downs Regional Council and the Balonne Regional Council may be able to provide further information on flooding in your area of the Moonie River catchment.
Flood Warnings and Bulletins
The Bureau of Meteorology issues Flood Warnings and River Height Bulletins for the Moonie River regularly during floods. They are sent to radio stations for broadcast, and to local Councils, emergency services and a large number of other agencies involved in managing flood response activities.
Flood Warnings and River Height Bulletins are available via :
Internet/World Wide Web
Interpreting Flood Warnings and River Height Bulletins
Flood Warnings and River Height Bulletins contain observed river heights for a selection of the river height monitoring locations. The time at which the river reading has been taken is given together with its tendency (e.g. rising, falling, steady or at its peak). The Flood Warnings may also contain predictions in the form of minor, moderate or major flooding for a period in the future. River Height Bulletins also give the height above or below the road bridge or causeway for each river station located near a road crossing.
One of the simplest ways of understanding what the actual or predicted river height means is to compare the height given in the Warning or Bulletin with the height of previous floods at that location.
The table below summarises the flood history of the Moonie River basin - it contains the flood gauge heights of the more significant recent floods.
Historical flood heights for all river stations in the Moonie River Floodwarning network, as shown on the map, are available from the Bureau of Meteorology upon request.
At each flood warning river height station, the severity of flooding is described as minor, moderate or major according to the effects caused in the local area or in nearby downstream areas. Terms used in Flood Warnings are based on the following definitions.
Each river height station has a pre-determined flood classification which details heights on gauges at which minor, moderate and major flooding commences. Other flood heights may also be defined which indicate at what height the local road crossing or town becomes affected by floodwaters.
The table below shows the flood classifications for selected river height stations in the Moonie River catchment.
(B) = Bridge (A) = Approaches (C) = Causeway (X) = Crossing
The above details arecorrect at the time of preparing this document. Up-to-date flood classifications and other details for all flood warning stations in the network are at:Flood gauge information
For the latest rainfall and river height conditions please use the following link:
For the latest rainfall and river height network map please use the following link:Network maps
For further information, contact: