Cyclones after the Floods

Australia’s worst natural disaster on record was of course the Floods which afflicted large areas of Queensland plus some of New South Wales and Victoria.

Tragic loss of human life plus devastating losses too of farm and wild animals

We had some really good news this week, hearing that lovely people we met in central Queensland escaped the worst of the flooding.

Although we travelled at the end of last year through so many of the areas affected, including Toowoomba, Emerald and Rockhampton, we were well clear of the disaster when it struck. The Sunshine and Gold Coasts escaped the devastation and indeed the tourism industry here has been careful to communicate that the coasts are well open for business as usual.

Now – cyclones! Cyclone Yasi is currently a Category 5 Tropical Cyclone, 280kph wind speeds with an 8m storm surge predicted. Well above us, about 16ookm away in the Cairns and Townsville areas. Predicted to make landfall between at around midnight tonight. Lots of people evacuated including from the Whitsundays, where we were sailing at Christmas. Many people evacuated in the northern Queensland area now and the rest hunkered down “in the safest room of their house” or “under a strong table”, “boarding up windows and doors” etc – all details on www.disasterqld.gov.au. The QLD Premier Anna Bligh has been warning people to prepare for the worst, to stay indoors, and to expect to be without electricity and communications.

The cyclone cell is larger than the state of Queensland – absolutely huge. Ironically, it’s so devastating that it’s already knocked out the weather station. Predicted to last another 12 hours or so. The TV Weather Channel is very comprehensive.

Thanks to everyone who’s contacted us to check we’re OK. Australia is such a vast country that there always seems to be something extreme somewhere – although the Floods and now this Cyclone Yasi are unprecedented. Our thoughts are with everyone taking shelter from this Tropical Storm tonight.

One thing’s for sure: the “mateship” for which Australians are so famous will be in strong evidence. We’ve been humbled and extremely impressed by the huge outpouring of help which the Floods brought about – both neighbours and strangers rolling up their sleeves and helping people clean out and set up their homes and businesses, for days or weeks on end. Very impressive. Well done Australia.

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One Response
  1. Sam Hembury says:

    You guys could have gone somewhere that i didn’t have to worry about you all!! Glad your all having such a great time and cant wait to come out to stay with my lot!

    Take Care x

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