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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Indians Among Those Affected By Flash Flood; Queensland Treasurer Puts Cost At $13bn

Brisbane drowns, thousands flee city

Melbourne: Waters of the swollen Brisbane river roared into Austrlia's third largest city washing away homes, restuarants and cars, forcing thousands, inlcuding Indians, to flee their homes.
    Surging from weeks of heavy rain, the river breached its embankment and entered the suburbs. The toll from the weeks of flash floods went up to 32 in Queensland since floods swept northeastern Australia.
    The roaring river waters shut down over 3,500 commercial establishments in the city and clogged all the major thoroughfares of the city of over 2 million people and the state's treasurer Andrew Fisher estimated the damages to run up to $13 billion.
    But the real big flood flood test, authorities said would come within 24 hours when the heavily swollen Brisbane river reaches an expected flood peak. Brisbane almost ap
peared to be ghost town with
roads and avenues deserted and homes without electricity.
All shipping through the port
has been stopped. The city's well known Ea
gle Street pier was completely under water as murky water from the drains fill the streets. A downtown stadium
with a seating capacity of more than 50,000 appeared
like a mini-lake. More than 20,000 homes are expected to be hit as the flooding reaches its peak early Thursday morning. City's mayor Campbell Newman warned that worse was yet to come.
    A large number of Indians are believed to have been affected by the Queensland flooding. It is believed that over 10,000 students are currently enrolled in Central Queensland University (CQU).
    Newman said new flood modelling indicated an estimated 19,700 residential properties and 3,500 commercial premises were likely to be flooded in the city as Brisbane river burst its banks and inundated suburbs, including Jindalee, Toowong and Yeronga. As the country witnessed the worst flood crisis in a century, the number of missing people has been scaled down to 67 from 90 after many were found during frantic rescue efforts. PTI


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