Australia flood death toll grows

23:00, Jan 30 2013
NSW flooding
The usually tranquil Wategos Beach in the wake of Cyclone Oswald.
NSW flooding
The town of Bellingen was cut in half following torrential rain with the Lavenders Bridge covered in flood waters.
NSW flooding
Chickens are recovered in Brisbane.
NSW flooding
The town of Bellingen was cut in half following torrential rain with the Lavenders Bridge covered in flood waters.
NSW flooding
Debris goes down the Brisbane River.
NSW flooding
Greg Thistleton stands near a fallen tree in Brisbane where a young child was killed when the tree fell on him and his mother.
NSW flooding
Flood waters sweep through Ipswich.
NSW flooding
The Brisbane river seen from Mowbray Park.
NSW flooding
A Swift Water Rescue officer saves a young boy in Rockhampton.
NSW flooding
Riverside restaurants in Brisbane are bagged in preparation for the flood peak.
NSW flooding
The storms caused huge waves at Bronte Beach in Sdyney.
NSW flooding
Coogee Beach, Sydney, on Tuesday morning.
NSW flooding
Sydney being lashed with rain after cyclone Oswald headed south from Queensland.
Australian floods
A stranded boat in Redcliffe.
Australian floods
The flooded Mt Lindsay Highway at Jimboomba, Queensland.
Australian floods
Patients evacuated from Bundaberg Hospital wait to board Hercules running airlifts to Brisbane.
Australian floods
Bargara, east of Bundaberg, was slammed by a vicious storm, uprooting trees, downing powerlines and ripping roofs off houses.
Australian floods
Flood waters take over Bundaberg.
Australian floods
Water covers the bike path on the South Bank, Brisbane.
Australian floods
Flood warning ... sightseers gather at the Prince Street wharf in Grafton where official readings are taken.
A resident looks on at a neighbourhood in Bundaberg during record flooding in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
A resident looks on at a neighbourhood in Bundaberg during record flooding in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
A resident looks on at a neighbourhood in Bundaberg during record flooding in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
US astronaut Chris Hadfield tweeted this image from space of flood waters heading into the Coral Sea near Rockhampton.
A resident looks on at a neighbourhood in Bundaberg during record flooding in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
State Emergency Service patrol the streets on boat as parts of southern Queensland experiences record flooding.
A resident looks on at a neighbourhood in Bundaberg during record flooding in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
These cows went to extreme lengths to keep dry as the floods came in at Pine Creek, east of Bundaberg.
A resident looks on at a neighbourhood in Bundaberg during record flooding in the wake of Tropical Cyclone Oswald.
The Queensland city of Bundaberg seen from the air.
The site of the damage in Bundaberg proves too much for this local.
The sun rises over flooded the Burnett river in Bundaberg.
This sign was put up in East Bundaberg after reports of looters.
Much of Bundaberg was left underwater after the storms.
Tackling the clean up in Bundaberg.
Residents collect belongings from their homes as the flood waters recede in Bundaberg.
The flood waters peaked at 9.53 metres in Bundaberg but have now begun receding, meaning locals residents and relief teams can start the clean-up.
Some of the debris swept into the streets by the floods.

A second body has been found in the Lockyer Valley, west of Brisbane, lifting Queensland's flood toll to six.

The body of a 34-year-old man was found in a car submerged in Sandy Creek at Glen Cairn, near Gatton, on Wednesday morning.

Police have confirmed a second body was found nearby.

The 34-year-old was travelling to work from Gatton to Mulgowie at on Sunday morning with his 25-year-old mate following in a second car.

Both were swept off the road by rising floodwaters.

Police divers discovered the second man's body on this afternoon.

Four other people have died in the disaster, all in Queensland, including a three-year-old boy who was hit by a falling gum tree while watching floodwaters in Brisbane. His pregnant mother remained in a critical condition in hospital.

The devastation caused by Cyclone Oswald across Queensland and neighbouring New South Wales was expected to linger for days, with thousands of homes inundated and entire communities isolated.

In one of the worst hit areas, Bundaberg, teams trained to find earthquake victims were to sweep flood-bound homes amid fears elderly or disabled people could be trapped.

The river that runs through the Queensland sugar city broke its banks during the storm, sending fast-moving, muddy water pouring into streets and homes.

Thousands of residents fled to evacuation centres, while patients at the local hospital were airlifted to Brisbane as a precaution. There were fears they would be stranded in the shelters for days.

Four helicopters and several civilian choppers also performed more than 1000 air rescues, lifting stranded residents off roofs in North Bundaberg.

The four urban search-and-rescue teams would soon be deployed to the city, where 2000 homes and 200 businesses have been inundated, leaving 7500 residents displaced. 

FEARS OF RUNNING DRY

Some suburbs in Brisbane could run out of water today, city authorities have warned.

Flooding in the Brisbane River catchment has caused major  problems at a water treatment plant at Mt Crosby.

It's partially back on line, but full restoration won't happen for another day and a half and reservoirs that service some  southside suburbs are running very low, Premier Campbell Newman said.

Supplies of bottled water had been positioned on the southside  in case supplies ran out, Newman said.

''If any reservoir runs dry, we'll be immediately providing that  for distribution to local areas,'' he told ABC television.''This is very serious.''

LUCKY ESCAPE

A tense night for residents in the northern NSW town of Maclean ended in relief after the swollen Clarence River peaked below the expected level.

The State Emergency Service said there were no reports of inundated properties and the river was holding steady at 3.08 metres, below the predicted 3.2-metre peak.

However authorities were closely monitoring conditions as the levee wall in Maclean is 3.3 metres.

More than 750 residents in low-lying parts of the town were ordered to evacuate last night based on the Bureau of Meteorology's predicted flood peak this morning.

The SES said the evacuation order remained in place.

Floodwaters have been receding today throughout both stated but dozens of communities remain cut off and partly underwater.

-  Sydney Morning Herald, The Brisbane Times and AAP

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