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Road safety during flooding and fire

Don’t drive through floodwater or around bushfires. If you have to drive in affected areas, follow these tips to stay safe.  


Floods can occur almost anywhere in Queensland and can rise over days, or in minutes in a 'flash flood'. Flood waters can move fast, so never try to drive over roads that have water over them.

To stay safe while driving in flooded areas:

  • obey road closure signs
  • when floodwater starts to go down, don’t drive over the roads until the road is open again. Sometimes the road damage is not known until the road is completely dry and is being driven on again
  • drive carefully on roads that have been reopened because they may still be drying out
  • look out for landslides as many roadsides will have exposed layers of rocks and soil that could slip.


Bushfires can happen in Queensland between late July and February. To stay safe on the road around bushfires:

  • avoid driving in areas where bushfires are burning. You should only drive during a bushfire as a last resort
  • listen to your local radio for updates on fire conditions in your area
  • follow the instructions of police and fire fighters if roads are closed.

If you are caught in the path of a bushfire:

  • make a u-turn and drive to safety.
  • call the fire brigade on Triple Zero (000) to tell them where you are
  • look for your closest neighbourhood safer place
  • turn on your headlights so you can see through thick smoke—make sure you keep the engine running so the battery doesn’t go flat
  • close all vents and windows.

Plan ahead

Check for closed roads or changed road conditions online or by calling 13 19 40.

Never drive through floodwater

More than half of flood-related deaths are a result of driving through floodwater. Even if it looks calm, no one can predict what floodwater will do or what’s happened to the road underneath. Any amount of swift flowing water can sweep away your car, no matter what you drive. Don’t risk it.

If it’s flooded, forget it. Always have a Plan B.

Last updated
27 March 2017
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