Cairns Flooding: What To Do Before, During, After A Flood? - Jackery Australia

Cairns Flooding: What To Do Before, During, After A Flood?

Cairns Flooding: What To Do Before, During, After A Flood?

As the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, Cairns, a city of over 150,000 people, has been cut off almost entirely by the torrential rains brought by the remnants of Tropical Cyclone Jasper, which made landfall last week before stalling over Queensland. Water supplies in Cairns and the adjacent areas have been severely impacted by record-breaking precipitation, which has caused the loss of homes and the rescue of residents. (Data Source: CNN)

carins flooding

The severe weather advisory issued in response to ex-tropical Cyclone Jasper has been lifted, although the "risk remains real," according to authorities. This article provides a comprehensive overview of Cairns flooding, including pertinent information, a flood map, and advice on what to do before, during, and after a flood. The Jackery Solar Generator is a portable solar power system with increased capacity and a more affordable price point, allowing you to charge most household appliances during a power outage caused by flooding.

Key Takeaways:

  • According to the report, nine individuals, one of whom was a kid, were reportedly stranded on the roof of a hospital located approximately 170 km north of Cairns.

  • The Council's website provides links to various Cairns flood cameras.

  • People are frequently cognisant of the susceptibility of Cairns North, Portsmith, Bungalow, and the Cairns CBD to flooding during the rainy season.

  • When preparing for the Cairns flooding, you need to know the flood warnings, make a flood plan, prepare the emergency kit, and arrange your pets or livestock.

  • If you are at home during the flood, you should protect valuables first, then prevent dangerous items. Also, take immediate action (electricity, gas, water, toilet, fuels) after flood warnings. If you are travelling on the road, strolling, driving, and boating should be avoided in flooded areas.

  • The most important thing is to take a Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus or 2000 Pro to power essential devices, such as your phones, radios, lights, and more.

Cairns Flooding Facts 

Nine individuals, one of whom was a minor, were reportedly stranded on the roof of a hospital located approximately 170 kilometres (105 miles) to the north of Cairns. Sunday, some 300 persons were rescued in the vicinity of Cairns, according to a report released on Monday by the Queensland State Emergency Service. Authorities have not reported any fatalities or injuries. Over 650 millimetres (approximately 25.6 inches) of precipitation fell in Cairns over 19 hours, compared to over 300 millimetres (about 11.81 inches) in 6 hours. (Data Source: CNN)

Although the severe weather advisory that ex-tropical Cyclone Jasper had issued has been lifted, the "risk remains real." Significant portions of Far North Queensland are still submerged in water. Cairns and the surrounding isolated communities are particularly impacted by the unprecedented flooding catastrophe caused by precipitation equivalent to an entire year falling in less than one week.

In recent days, remnants of a tropical cyclone in Australia's northeastern coast fell an unexpected 30 to 40 inches of precipitation, inundating an area that serves as the entrance to the Great Barrier Reef and posing a temporary threat to drinking water supplies.

As the imminent peril of severe weather has dissipated, individuals are advised to exercise caution in the vicinity of floodwaters because of the disease and crocodile risks. The freshwater supply in Cairns has been restored, and the water treatment plan is now operational; therefore, it is safe to drink.

However, a significant number of individuals in the region are powerless. Approximately 90% of initially darkened structures have since had their electricity restored; however, 13,000 new houses and buildings have been cut off due to the heavy rainfall. When a power disruption occurs due to flooding, a portable solar generator, such as the Jackery Solar Generator, which produces electricity using solar energy, appears to be an even more crucial item.

Cairns Flood Cameras

Flooding is a significant issue for several inhabitants of Cairns, a tropical metropolis in the northern region of Queensland. Central Cairns is prone to flooding during the rainy season because it is situated at a low altitude.

On the Council's website, links to a variety of Cairns flood cameras are provided. This enables disaster recovery personnel and residents to monitor the situation from desktops. The installation of these cameras is anticipated to deter individuals from hastening into hazardous regions to investigate flooding. The flood cameras in Cairns monitor:

  • Peets Bridge and Gillies Highway
  • Moody Creek Detention Basin
  • Mckinnon Creek
  • Ryan Weare Park
  • Rocks Road
  • Mary Parker Drive
  • Yorkeys Creek
  • Barr Creek
  • Redden Creek

Cairns Flood Map

The readily accessible Cairns flood map identifies "flood-prone" areas that require evacuation during natural disasters. South Cairns possesses a passable level of resistance to flooding. On the contrary, portions of the northern coastlines and inner-city suburbs could be characterised as disaster-prone environments.

It was suggested that inhabitants conserve water and utilise rainwater for flushing restrooms. The precipitation fell over the Cape York Peninsula for approximately five days as the remnants of Tropical Cyclone Jasper moved slowly over the area. The storm landed in the region on Wednesday as a Category 2 cyclone. It rapidly weakened before stalling and dumping persistent heavy rainfall.

cairns flood map

(Data Source: BoM)

People are frequently cognisant of the susceptibility of Cairns North, Portsmith, Bungalow, and the Cairns CBD to flooding during the rainy season. However, their awareness regarding the potential for inundation in other low-lying areas of Cairns could be much higher. The suburbs of Manunda, Westcourt, and Parramatta Park are also exceptionally susceptible to flooding and rising sea levels, as this image of inundation in Manunda demonstrates.

How to Prepare for A Cairns Flooding? 

You may be advised to evacuate if further significant flooding is anticipated, or in extreme cases of rapid flooding, information pertinent to your location will be provided. Prolonged annual precipitation, topographical features, and expansive river systems all contribute to the prevalence of Cairns flooding. Most flooding primarily results in inconveniences like the closure of roads and bridges. Therefore, understanding how to prepare for a flood in Cairns is crucial.

how to prepare for a flood

Step 1: Know Flood Warnings

DFES will issue advisories and warnings once the BoM has issued a Flood Watch or Warning. The Bureau issues flood Warnings when a flood is imminent or anticipated in a specific area or location. In anticipation of impending flash flooding, a Severe Weather Warning is generated to provide advance notice of the potential occurrence. Five distinct warning levels correspond to the anticipated occurrence times of flooding. 

flood warnings
  • Prepare for Flooding: One essential step in readiness for a flood is thoroughly evaluating one's flood plan. Ascertain the completeness of your emergency kit and prepare your residence, both internally and externally. Never swim, saunter, or play in floodwaters, as they are highly hazardous. No camping or parking is permitted near rivers.

  • Take Action Now: Regarding this advisory, it is advisable to monitor fluctuations in water levels in anticipation of the necessity for an evacuation. Stockfeed or pet food should you be unable to return to your residence for several days. Animals and equipment must be relocated.

  • Prepare to Evacuate: Now is the time to determine your destination and ensure your emergency supplies are readily available. Assure that all household members are donning appropriate attire and sturdy footwear. Turn off the primary reserves of electricity, water, and gas, per the instructions of emergency services. Sandbags should be prepared for placement in overflowing sewers and toilets to prevent sewage backflow.

  • Evacuate Now: Immediately evacuate to a location that is deemed safer, ensuring that you carry your emergency and relocation supplies with you. Sandbags should be placed in restrooms, over drainage holes, and across doorways if one cannot evacuate to impede backflow. Locate a secure haven in the uppermost level of the dwelling.

  • Cancellation: Ultimately, you should monitor water level fluctuations to be prepared to take action. Walking, swimming, or playing in floodwaters is hazardous; avoid storm drains, pipelines, ravines, and ditches.

Step 2: Make A Flood Plan

The Cairns Regional Council has established an evacuation centre at the Marlin Coast Recreation Centre in Smithfield to accommodate individuals who desire to depart from their residences in light of the flooding in Cairns. Your likelihood of survival will increase significantly if all members of your household reach a consensus on a written flood plan.

You will need a response plan that includes potential evacuation, even to higher floors or from specific rooms or areas, and measures to mitigate other threats to life and property, e.g., sandbagging, moving items to higher locations by your site and the likely severity of flooding. 
(Data Source:Cairns Gov)

At any moment, natural disasters may transpire. If one's property is situated in a region susceptible to inundation, it is critical to devise strategies to safeguard oneself, one's family, livestock, pets, and property against its detrimental impacts. Develop an evacuation strategy for your family and animals, and ensure that all individuals who reside, work, or visit your property are well-informed about it.

Establish multiple alternate routes and try to locate safer areas during a flash flood to facilitate a speedy evacuation. Include in your plan the location to which you will evacuate in an emergency. Local governments can provide details regarding the whereabouts of evacuation centres within their jurisdiction.

Step 3: Prepare The Flood Emergency Kit

Occasionally, you may be aware that inundation is possible; however, you may need to prepare more frequently. Without visible precipitation, flash floods can develop in minutes, and flooding caused by a drainage failure can occur suddenly. Due to this unpredictability, it is critical to understand the necessary preparations for one's residence in anticipation of a flood, particularly the Cairns flooding.

You must store your emergency kit in a watertight plastic container or a durable, water-resistant bag. A deluge may leave you without water, electricity, and other vital services for several days. A fundamental kit should be readily available at all times. The materials listed below should be included in this kit. 

Flood Emergency Kit

Emergency Contact Details 

Important Documents

Non-Perished Food

Can Opener

Cooking Supplies



Jackery Solar Generator

First Aid Kit

Sanitary Items

Protective Clothing



Infant Supplies

Spare Clothes

Pet Supplies

House Keys

Car Keys

In flood-prone regions, where residential and commercial properties are being severely damaged by ongoing flooding, a dependable power supply is essential to ensure the continued operation of appliances, including sump pumps, refrigerators, lighting, and more. For residents of areas prone to frequent flooding, portable solar generators provide a practical and economical alternative, particularly the Jackery Solar Generator, which integrates Jackery Solar Panels with a mobile power station to convert solar energy into electrical power. This solar emergency kit is essential during a flood or any other emergency.

Step 4: Arrange Your Pets or Livestock

In addition to property and family preparations for natural disasters, you must also account for livestock and pets. Ensuring that all canines are adequately identified through name tags, microchips, or current photographs is imperative. Additionally, maintain up-to-date stock registers for your livestock.

You can ensure your pet's safety by relocating them to a secure location beforehand. This may entail transporting the animals to animal boarding facilities, family members' homes, a temporary animal shelter, or an evacuation centre accommodating animals. When relocating your pets, ensure that you have adequate pet food, a carry-on bag, toilet paper, essential medications, and veterinary contact information.

Apart from how to prepare for a flood, you may also be interested in:

What to Do During A Cairns Flooding?

One should anticipate deep floodwaters with powerful currents and pointed objects that have the potential to cause harm or ensnare. Additionally, hazardous chemicals, toxic refuse, and animals may be present in floodwaters. When the Cairns flooding warning is issued, adhere to the safety instructions in the official alerting and ensure that all household members, including pets and animals, are informed of your flood preparations.

If You Stay At Home

Before seeking sanctuary in your home, it is critical that you are well informed about the potential dangers and consequences and that you adhere to the following procedures:

Protect Valuables: Position commonplace objects at an elevated height. Often, ceiling space can be used to construct flood-resistant storage for lighter domestic items. Nevertheless, unless specifically reinforced beforehand, the ceiling or upper floor may not securely support the additional weight of heavy equipment or furniture.

Prevent Dangerous Items: Firstly, place in watertight containers any chemicals that react with water to produce heat, explosive or toxic gases, or poisons at the highest concentration in your residence. Then, specify any substances with the potential to contaminate floodwaters. Lastly, assign items such as cardboard crates and newspapers requiring higher ground elevation. If this is not accomplished, they will clog sewers and disintegrate.

Add Value to Your Home: If evacuation is required, whether initiated by emergency personnel or oneself, increase the value of one's residence by turning off household utilities and vacating refrigerators and freezers while leaving doors ajar. If you choose to evacuate voluntarily, ensure that you inform the State or Territory emergency service or police and a family member, acquaintance, or neighbour of your whereabouts (and any pertinent information) so that authorities may hold you accountable.

Actions After Flood Warning: Several factors should be considered once you receive the Cairns flooding warning.

  • Electricity: Plug fuses or circuit breakers situated in a metre board fuse box affixed to the residence's wall regulate the flow of electricity. Remove all fuses, including those at the main and range switch, and position them above the anticipated flood level if inundation is imminent. Utilise a secondary power source, such as the ideal portable power supply for your home, a Jackery Solar Generator.

  • Gas: Turn off the primary gas valve. Typically, this valve is positioned on the gas piping immediately before it enters the gas metre.

  • Fuel Tanks: They should be secured with anchors to prevent them from toppling or floating.

  • Water: Turn the main water valve off. It is typically located at the water metre on the main line where the water supply enters the property. The hot water reservoir or a clean, covered bathtub may store potable water.

  • Toilet & Shower: To prevent the reverse flow of sewage into the residence, place a sturdy plastic bag packed with soil or sand within the toilet basin.

what to do during a flood

If You Travel On The Road

Fatalities associated with flooding in Australia predominantly transpire due to inexperienced individuals venturing into the hazardous conditions via foot, vehicle, or vessel. Strolling, driving, and boating should be avoided when not strictly necessary in flooded areas.

Travelling by vehicle on roadways during or following a flood is perilous. Bridges and roads are susceptible to severe destruction at the hands of inundation. Individuals have suffered severe injuries due to debris, perished after becoming trapped in their vehicles, or been carried away by swiftly moving water. You may believe your vehicle is robust enough to survive the floodwaters.

A 4WD can be submerged in floodwaters in as little as 30cm of moving water. For lesser vehicles, the distance is merely 15cm. When a thoroughfare is closed, it remains that way. Constantly observe road closures; inspect the road conditions if no signs indicate otherwise.

what to do during a flood

Jackery Solar Generators: Portable Power Supply for Cairns Flooding

A portable solar power system can be a stable power source for home backup, especially in an emergency. With its increased capacity, the Jackery Solar Generator, which integrates Jackery Solar Panels with a Portable Power Station to convert sunlight into electricity, is the most effective portable solar system. The Jackery Portable Power Station has a premium lithium battery, an MPPT charge controller, and a pure sine wave inverter to ensure a stable and consistent power supply to various household appliances and personal devices in a flood emergency, including your phones, radios, lights, batteries, etc.
Combining the Jackery Explorer 2000 Pro and SolarSaga 100W solar panels, the Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Pro has a combined capacity of 2160Wh and an output of 2200W. When dependable electricity is required for off-grid living, home backup, other outdoor activities, or power outages, the Solar Generator 2000 Pro is the optimal solution.

When utilised twice weekly, the Jackery Explorer 2000 Pro portable power station retains its ten-year operational lifespan. It is a dependable residential backup power source with a standby capacity of one year. The product is considered optimal owing to its cutting-edge characteristics:
  • A high-contrast, user-friendly interface
  • Efficient charging (requiring a mere two hours with AC input)
  • Robust security facilitated by a BMS of the highest calibre
  • The portability-enhancing 19.5-pound weight and collapsible handle are distinguishing features of the portable generator.
jackery solar generator 2000 pro
The introduction of the high-performance Solar Generator 2000 Plus by Jackery represents a notable progression in portable power alternatives. As a result of its substantial capacity and exceptional power output, it can supply energy for standard van utilities for multiple weeks and meet the power requirements of outdoor exploration or home backup power supply.

Incorporating battery cells into the Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus substantially increases the capacity from 2 kWh to 12 kWh, bringing about a paradigm shift in supplying residential reserve power. Capable of expanding to 3000W, this product exhibits a 30% increase in rated power compared to rival 2 kWh products. Powered devices make up an overwhelming majority of fundamental residential appliances. Despite its consistent daily use, the advanced LiFePO4 battery has ten years of protracted operational expectancy.
jackery solar generator 2000 plus

What Size of Solar Generator Do I Need?

Obtain complete protection against this danger with a solar-powered generator kit. Noiseless and fume-free, these generators are entirely secure for indoor use. In contrast to gas or alternative fuel generators, solar generators operate solely on sunlight for power. This eliminates any additional hazards at one's residence during the Cairns flooding season.

Regarding the portable solar system, individuals may select a Jackery Solar Generator with a capacity varying from 12 kWh to 240Wh, depending on the particular energy requirements. The formula for determining the operational hours of appliances powered by Jackery Solar Generators is as follows:

Working Hours (H) = [Jackery Solar Generator Capacity (Wh)*0.85] / Appliance's Wattage (W)

The Jackery Solar Generator 2000 Plus can provide a 100W radio with power for 17 hours (2042.8Wh) (2042.8*0.85/300). This formula assists in identifying the working hours during which appliances can operate in a flood. 
jackery solar generator 2000 pro vs 2000 plus

What to Do After The Cairns Flooding?

Behold, before venturing into a flood zone, the declaration of safety by the authorities. Delay entering your home until the water level has dropped below the floor. Before entering an isolated area, you must inform the appropriate authorities. This Cairns flooding can disrupt and damage communities and residences. Your family and you may experience emotional and tumultuous times during recovery.

If Your House Damaged: Carry a flashlight and move about slowly as you assess your home for damage if it has been damaged. Stairways and flooring require special attention. Be vigilant for areas of the ceiling that are sagging, loose floorboards, holes in the floor, and protruding fasteners that could collapse.

Wet plaster is hazardous and weighty; if it is open, break it down with a broomstick or other long-handled implement before beginning work. Several support services are accessible to provide emergency aid, lodging, food, and water to those whose residences have been damaged.

Drinking Water: If water contamination is possible due to flooding, consuming solely bottled or boiled water is advised until health authorities declare safety for the regular water supply.

Clean Up:
  • Dispose of and combust or bury trash, decomposing plant matter, and detritus.
  • Remove mud, dirt, and debris from your residence using a medium-pressure washer as soon as possible.
  • Commence the process from the highest point or upper threshold of the inundation with a hose and descend towards the basement or floor.
Your Wellbeing: Your wellbeing is of the utmost importance, and experiencing psychological and emotional distress in the aftermath of an emergency is perfectly normal. Over time, most individuals will recover with the assistance of family and acquaintances. However, it is often more straightforward to speak with someone trained to listen and not involved in the situation following a crisis.

Final Thoughts

The increasing thermal expansion of seawater as it warms and the escalation of meltwater from glaciers and ice sheets are primarily responsible for Cairns's flooding. This page contains comprehensive information on flooding in Cairns, including current news, flood cameras & maps, and advice on what to do before, during, and after a flood. In addition, a Jackery Solar Generator can power portable devices such as lights, radios, phones, and others. 

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