Council backs emergency SMS system after torrential rain, flash flooding

Rain poured down in the Redlands on Monday. Video: Jamie Crust

COUNCIL has backed its emergency notification system after rain battered the Redlands on Monday, causing flash flooding.

Capalaba MP Don Brown said council had failed to give any warnings to residents on any of the communication platforms.

But according to council, 23 warnings were sent out between 4pm on Monday and 2pm on Tuesday via its emergency notification system.

This included 13 weather warning emails and 10 flooded road notifications.

Council urged residents in November to subscribe to the system, with summer predicted to be wetter than average.

About 1800 people are signed up to the service.

In the wake of the storms, Mr Brown slammed council's emergency communication and repeated calls from November for a text messaging system.

"I'd like to see what was initially promised," he said.

"We all don't know what the system is and what it provides, and we should.

"It's important - the community needs to be informed."

Council said in November that only email alerts would be issued for weather warnings, but SMS messages would be available for other emergency news and flooded roads.

A council spokesperson said the system had worked as intended before and during the storm on Monday.

"The opt-in emergency messaging system ... forwards notifications from the Bureau of Meteorology, the official warning body for weather events," the spokesperson said.

The council spokesperson said some people who started to sign up to the emergency messaging service had not completed their registration by choosing which messages they wanted to receive.

HAVING A BALL: Kids play in the water during heavy rain on Monday. Photo: Jamie Crust

HAVING A BALL: Kids play in the water during heavy rain on Monday. Photo: Jamie Crust

Mr Brown said council also should have posted earlier updates on its Facebook page.

The first weather-related news went up on Redland City Council's Twitter page at 7.19pm on Monday, and its Facebook page at 7.50pm.

Council's social media activity throughout the night included reposting and retweeting warnings from the Weather Bureau and Seqwater.

Some residents questioned the timing of the posts, with heavy rain starting before 5pm.

More than 190mm of rain was dumped on the region, causing flash flooding across the city.

Drivers were stranded in floodwater at Birkdale and Thornlands, with a car swept onto a barrier on Springacre Road.

The Alexandra Hills weather station recorded its highest 24 hour rainfall total since it opened in 2015.

To check your subscription or sign-up for the emergency messaging system, visit the Redland City Council disaster dashboard.