Grantham flood victims felt "patronised"

Water from Lockyer Creek floods Gatton.
Water from Lockyer Creek floods Gatton. Contributed

A SOLICITOR representing 17 residents who survived the devastating 2011 Grantham flood has told an inquiry his clients felt the days following the disaster were worse than the day it occurred.

Twelve people died and houses were washed away in the Lockyer Valley, 100km west of Brisbane, when the area was ravaged by floodwaters on January 10, 2011.

An inquiry considering the impact the landscape and Grantham quarry had on the flood and how eyewitness accounts were handled began on Monday in Gatton.

READ MORE: Inquiry to examine why 12 died in Grantham floods

Lawyer Saul Holt told Commissioner Walter Sofronoff his 17 clients felt ignored, confused and patronised when the flooding was first investigated.

Counsel-assisting Michael Hodge said it was a one in 2000 year flood.

The owner of the quarry at the time of the flood, Denis Wagner, welcomed the inquiry.

His lawyer, Nicholas Andreatidis, tendered a hydraulic modelling report commissioned by the Wagners which stated the quarry did not cause or contribute to the flood, but slightly reduced the flooding.

In May Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk commissioned the new inquiry following calls from Lockyer Valley Mayor Steve Jones and Speaker Peter Wellington.

The inquiry is expected to run for five weeks, with the first fortnight to cover eyewitness accounts and weeks three and four to include expert testimony.

A report must be given to the Premier by August 31.


Topics:  editors picks flooding grantham

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