A mini-tornado has hit a Queensland coastal town as the state is battered by severe weather and flooding caused by the remnants of cyclone Oswald.

Premier Campbell Newman said the mini-tornado occurred around 1pm Brisbane time and caused heavy damage in Bargara, east of Bundaberg.

"Unroofing of various buildings around that town, power lines down and potentially an incident where a tree has gone down on a motor vehicle with, I believe two occupants," Mr Newman told reporters in Brisbane. Those two people were critically injured and are undergoing emergency treatment in Bundaberg Hospital.

"We have declared a disaster in that area."


Emergency services confirmed the mini-cyclone had cut a "swathe of damage" and officials were waiting for word on the condition of the male and female in the car.

Emergency Services Minister Jack Dempsey, who lives in Bundaberg, said 150 homes had been damaged at Burnett Heads.

The Brisbane Courier Mail was reporting 17 people were injured when the tornado hit the town.

Mr Dempsey said he could not confirm that number, but said a triage centre had been set up in Bargara to deal to tend to at least a dozen people injured by flying glass and other debris.

Mr Dempsey said East Bundaberg and small townships in the area had also been hit by mini-tornadoes, but it was not clear whether there had been several individual tornadoes or whether they were part of the same weather system.