Torrential rain leaves Queensland towns isolated

Days of torrential rain have left four north Queensland towns isolated, with no let-up in sight for residents still struggling to recover from Cyclone Yasi.

A massive rain band began soaking the Cassowary Coast on Monday and an upper level trough is expected to move into the area on Thursday, intensifying rainfall.

In the 24 hours to 9am Thursday, South Mission Beach received 321mm, Euramo 185mm and Tully 158mm, compounding massive falls over the last few days.

Emergency Management Queensland area director Daryl Camp said about a dozen homes had been flooded in cyclone-hit Cardwell as well as nearby Kennedy and Ellerbeck.

"It's just one more thing on top of everything else that's happened to the poor buggers," he told AAP.

Cardwell couple Molly and Archie Dunn lost windows, bits of wall, and every stick of furniture bar a bed and table when Cyclone Yasi hit last month.

Since then they've been living in the downstairs garage, surrounded by tarps affording flimsy protection against the deluge now swamping the town.

"We're dodging the leaks. We are getting a bit sick of it," Mr Dunn, 84, told AAP on Thursday.

His 72-year-old wife said they were just getting on with it. "You don't get bored, that's for sure."

At Tully, there was a lot of water around the town but so far no homes or businesses had gone under.

"There has been a lot of calls for help (from Tully)," Mr Camp said.

"These people have been living under tarps since cyclone Yasi and they're now leaking from the wind and rain."

Tully Police said the northern route out of town was still open but the route to the south was closed.

Cardwell, Mission Beach, Tully Heads and Hull Heads are isolated, with 60cm of water on roads in some places.

The SES received 89 calls for help in the region to fix tarps, sandbag and evacuate.

One woman called in early this morning to report that her ceiling had collapsed, Mr Camp said.

Two SES teams will be sent to Cardwell on Thursday. Another went in on Wednesday to help local crews.

A South Australian team of 18 flew in to Cairns on Wednesday but they're now stuck at Mission Beach, helping residents there.

"They're going to be busy," Mr Camp said.

Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Bryan Rolstone says the situation is expected to get worse.

"Today and tomorrow will be the worst for those townships," he told AAP.

"Because the catchment is saturated, flooding is very easy and when we have heavy rain, flooding is more likely."

The massive monsoonal trough that's causing the torrential rain is almost stationary, spanning from the southern part of the Gulf Country to the northeast tropical Coast.

A severe weather warning for flash flooding has been issued for the area.


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