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洪水肆虐 澳第三大城市恐难保
Brisbane braces itself for worst floods in more than a century

[ 2011-01-12 16:04]     字号 [] [] []  
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洪水肆虐 澳第三大城市恐难保

洪水肆虐 澳第三大城市恐难保

Thousands of Brisbane residents have been forced to evacuate their homes as the city braces itself for its worst flooding in more than a century.

Thousands of Brisbane residents have been forced to evacuate their homes as the city braces itself for its worst flooding in more than a century.

The devastating Queensland floods have claimed at least 10 lives in the last two days and left more than 70 people missing on Tuesday after a torrent raged through the streets of Toowoomba, west of Brisbane.

As the winding Brisbane River breached its banks in several places to engulf parks and footbridges and heavy rain continued to fall on the metropolitan area, the city's main roads and public transport system quickly became clogged as people rushed to get to higher ground.

The authorities called for calm amid reports of panic buying among Brisbane residents, and police asked for volunteers to help fill sandbags as the scale of the threat became clearer.

Early estimates suggested that more than 9,000 homes could be inundated when the Brisbane River peaks at 12ft on Thursday.

The destruction was already evident, with a steady stream of debris, including boats and whole pontoons, floating down the swollen Brisbane River.

Record floods in 1893 dumped the gunship Paluma on the Brisbane Botanical Gardens, while in 1974, a torrent killed 16 people and inundated a third of the city's metropolitan area.

On Wednesday, power will be cut in the city centre for safety reasons, leaving more than five thousand homes without electricity.

A disaster zone had been declared for one third of Queensland, giving police extra powers to force residents to evacuate if necessary.

Brisbane, which is Australia's third largest city and is home to two million people, was under siege on four fronts, with run-off from the flash flooding in the Lockyer Valley to the west, large volumes of water running down the Brisbane River, a king tide and heavy rain combining to create what Julia Gillard, the prime minister, called "a very dire situation".

Outside Brisbane, towns to the west and north were isolated by the floodwaters and rescue efforts were being hampered by continuing bad weather.

About 300 people were being airlifted from the Lockyer Valley town of Forest Hill and the outlook was desperate for Ipswich, where water was expected to inundate one third of the town. In Grantham, which bore the brunt of the torrent that poured down from Toowoomba, there were scenes of severe destruction.

Ms Gillard, who was last night flying to Brisbane, said the events unfolding in Queensland were shocking and warned the nation to brace for the death toll to rise.

Government meteorologists have said that the flash flooding was almost impossible to predict.

Anna Bligh, the premier of Queensland, fought back tears as she described the events as "our darkest hour".

"This weather may be breaking our hearts but it will not break our will", she said.

The severe flooding threatening the state capital comes after almost one month of flooding across Queensland that now covers an area the size of France and Germany combined and could cost more than $10bn.





洪水肆虐 澳第三大城市恐难保

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