Cars float in a flooded street in Bundaberg. (Photo by
Chris Hyde/Getty Images)
Central and southern Queensland face a mammoth recovery
task as record-breaking flood waters recede.
Thousands of people have been displaced as rivers and creeks,
swollen by torrential rain from ex-tropical cyclone Oswald,
rose up and inundated homes and businesses on Monday and
In the worst-hit city of Bundaberg, 2000 homes and 200
businesses were inundated when the river reached a record
height on Tuesday afternoon.
More than 7500 displaced residents are seeking refuge in
evacuation centres or with friends and family on higher
Queensland Premier Campbell Newman toured Bundaberg on
Tuesday and urged Queenslanders to aid disaster victims.
"They all need our support. We've got to reach out and help
them now," he said.
Mr Newman also paid tribute to the resilience of residents,
who in some cases have weathered four floods in three years.
"It's incredible to see the spirit of Queenslanders out on
the streets of their cities and towns as they grapple with
what is a big crisis."
The news was better for residents of Brisbane and Ipswich in
the southeast, where water levels peaked lower than expected.
Early indications are that water stayed below floorboard
level in Brisbane, while about 35 homes in Ipswich had water
in their living areas.
It was a world away from the disaster of January 2011.
Then, tens of thousands of homes in the southeast were
inundated and Brisbane's damage bill ran into the tens of
In coming days the city's key challenge will be to maintain
water supplies after the flooding forced the shutdown of two
Residents have been told to limit water use around the home
until further notice.
As the flood waters recede, attention will turn to the huge
damage bill and recovery task.
The premier says Bundaberg will be the focus and has arranged
for 400-500 soldiers to help clean the city up.
Already 9800 insurance claims have been lodged in Queensland
worth a combined $116 million, according to the Insurance
Council of Australia.
The damage to infrastructure is still being assessed but it's
been estimated the bill will still reach the hundreds of
millions, without counting crop and livestock losses.
The Queensland premier is urging people to donate to the
government's Queensland Flood Appeal which is being
coordinated with Red Cross.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Governor-General Quentin
Bryce are expected to visit flood-affected regions in
Queensland in coming days.
TWO MEN MISSING
Two men are still missing days after they failed to turn up
at work, with one of their cars discovered fully submerged in
a flooded creek west of Brisbane.
A 25-year-old man was driving a white 1997 Mitsubishi Magna
sedan from Gatton to Mulgowie for work on Sunday.
It was discovered underwater in Sandy Creek off Woodlands
Road at Glen Cairn, near Gatton, on Tuesday afternoon, police
They are also searching for a 34-year-old man who was
travelling from the valley community of Gatton to Mulgowie
for work at the same time.
He failed to arrive and has not made contact with colleagues
since. The worker was travelling in a silver 1993 Toyota
Camry with registration number 425RWU.
Police said the car has not been located.
It's not known if the men were known to each other or were
travelling in convoy.
Police said the Mitsubishi Magna was extracted from Sandy
Creek late on Monday. SES crews have commenced a search and
rescue operation in the area.