Southeast Queensland beaches could be pounded with four-metre waves in coming days as a tropical low sweeps along the coast.
But forecasters don't believe the weather system will strengthen into a cyclone, and it's not even expected to dump much rain.
The low in the Coral Sea is about 1300km northeast of the Sunshine Coast and it's tracking steadily south towards the coast, where its effects will be felt from Wednesday morning.
But none of the models used by the Bureau of Meteorology suggest it will become a cyclone, and while it's expected to come close to the southeast Queensland coast, it should remain offshore.
Bureau forecaster Dean Narramore said the worst effects would be gale-force winds and large swells that could cause beach erosion.
Dangerous surf conditions are expected to develop during Wednesday morning along the east coast of Fraser Island and the Sunshine Coast.
The Gold Coast will feel the low's influence from Wednesday afternoon, with rough conditions likely to continue on Thursday.
High tides on Wednesday and Thursday could cause some inundation in low-lying areas prone to flooding, but Mr Narramore said the system was unlikely to bring much rain to the southeast.
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"Most of the heavy rainfall will be offshore. Coastal areas could see quite a few showers but no widespread heavy rain," he told AAP on Tuesday.
Redland City Council, which takes in bayside and island communities east of Brisbane, is not taking any chances and has opened sandbagging stations to help residents prepare.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the chance of a cyclone off southeast Queensland was low, but the weather system could bring substantial rain.
Massive clean-up underway in north Queensland
She said money meanwhile was flowing to flood victims in the north, with 863 applications for personal hardship payments granted and authorities maintaining close contact with isolated communities including Burketown, Normanton and Karumba.
There's no estimate yet of damage to the state's road network but the bill will be high, with mountains of debris left on bridges and entire road surfaces washed away.
The Bruce Highway north and south of Ingham reopened on Monday, but lower speed limits are in force on some damaged stretches.
In the far north, engineers are investigating a large crack that has opened up on the Palmerston Highway. There have also been landslips on that highway, as well as the Gillies Range Road and Kennedy Highway.
The Burke Developmental Road, north of Normanton, is still under a significant amount of water and is expected to be closed for some time.