Tsunami Hits Australia

By Robert Kirchgassner,

A massive tsunami struck Australia, killing 10 people with 78 people still missing and the northeastern city of Toowoomba was stricken by a flash flood on Monday.

"There was water coming down everywhere in biblical proportions," Toowoomba Councilmember Joe Ramia told the Associated Press.

Brisbane, Australia’s third-largest city, also suffered heavy damage with many homes along the Brisbane River submerged.

Leroy Shephard, a resident of the town of Grantham, was inside his home when the tsunami hit. He and his family were on the roof of his house for five hours waiting for the waters to drop. "You could feel the whole house just pop up off its stumps, turn around, and go — for a 100 meters (330 feet) or something down my backyard," Shephard told Australian Broadcasting Corp.

Emergency services picked up over 40 people from homes isolated by the torrent that hit Lockyer Valley. The entire population of the small community of Forest Hill was airlifted to safety in military helicopters.

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh stated that the bad weather was easing and that searching would be easier Wednesday. Bligh stated that the cost of repairs after the floods could be as high as $5 billion.

In addition to the lives lost, the province’s coal and farming industries have shut down.

Forecasters have predicted the possibility of more flash floods during the week.



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