Tropical Cyclone Owen is tipped to bring heavy rain to the Gympie region.
Tropical Cyclone Owen is tipped to bring heavy rain to the Gympie region. Bureau of Meteorology

Mary Valley forests closed as Gympie prepares for 200mm+

MARY Valley plantations will be closed from midnight tonight until at least next Tuesday amid severe weather warnings along coastal Queensland related to Tropical Cyclone Owen.

HQ Plantations announced the closure "due to heavy rainfall and strong wind predictions” associated with the cyclone.

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"Affected plantation areas include those at Beerburrum (including the Glasshouse Mountains), Fraser Coast, Mary Valley, Jimna Gallangowan, Elliott River and all plantations north of Bundaberg,” a HQ Plantations statement read.

"Most inland plantations including those around Blackbutt, Yarraman, Pechey-Esk and Passchendaele will remain open but visitors are advised to proceed with caution and drive to the conditions if there has been significant rainfall or strong winds.

"These plantations will remain closed to all public access until at least Tuesday 18 December, at which time a re-assessment of risks will be undertaken.”

The statement advised state and council-managed roads would remain open "unless otherwise indicated by police or other signage”.

The update comes after the Bureau of Meteorology warned of "exceptionally high rainfall levels all over the state as Tropical Cyclone Owen crosses the coast at Cape York”.

The BoM advised everywhere from Cairns to the Gold Coast can expect maximum levels of at least 200mm from tomorrow to Monday, and included Rainbow Beach in its latest flood watch for the weekend and into next week.

The status of plantation closures will be updated online at www.hqplantations.com.au/news.

The Parks and Forests website will provide and update campground restrictions on its website here.

Gympie Times


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