Brisbane Power Cuts to Last weeks

In Australasia, Floods & Storms, News Headlines

Energex says the flood crisis could leave some Brisbane residents without power for weeks.

More than 43,000 homes and businesses across south-east Queensland still have no electricity.

Supplies should be restored in the Brisbane suburbs of Jindalee, Moggill and River Hills by Saturday.

But Energex spokesman Danny Donald says others – including Indooroopilly, Yeronga, parts of Oxley, West End, St Lucia and Milton – will have to wait a while longer.

“Certainly heading up to the river towards Milton we’ve seen some houses that are still under water and they may not be connected to the grid for days if not weeks, until they’re able to be tested and deemed safe,” he said.

In the CBD, business operators and property owners have returned to assess the damage without power.

Energex spokesman Mike Swanston says numerous power supply points along the pier are still under water and mud.

“I’m aghast at the amount of damage we’re seeing,” he said.

He says there has been major damage to the power network in the city and it will be a week before the CBD’s power grid is fully restored. Generators will be brought in in the meantime.

Leighton Contractors says a big clean-up lies ahead before construction work can resume on its Eagle Street office tower.

Senior project manager Petie Walker says the basement is a mess but the rest of the construction site is OK.

Springing back to life

The swollen river is still lapping at the fences of some properties in the inner-city suburb of West End, but the clean-up is in full swing at most flooded homes.

Jodie and Desi have been helping clean the mud out of the lower level of a house belonging to a couple in their 90s.

“People along here did it in ’74 but can’t do it now, so they really need younger – though we’re not young – but we might be middle-aged people who can do it,” Jodie said.

“But these younger people here, the little grandchildren, aren’t they good little boys – we just boss them around and tell them to do all the heavy lifting.”

And in Rosalie, melted ice-cream poured into the street as spoiled food is cleared from flood-damaged cafes, shops and restaurants. The area was among the first to be swamped by the Brisbane River.

Fire and Rescue officer Brian Harvey is overseeing the clean-up.

“We’re actually pumping out some basements at the moment and have advised all the shop owners to get all the food and everything out,” he said.

“Then we’ll work on getting all the damaged goods to the footpath for the council to get rid of them.

“Then we’ll work on trying to clean all the shops and the street fronts out and the roads from all of the silt.”

Death toll rises

However despite the focus in Brisbane and Ipswich shifting to clean-up, the grisly task of recovering bodies from the Lockyer Valley continues.

Another body has been found, bringing the death toll from floods in the south-east to 16.

The woman’s body was found near Grantham, the town torn apart by a wall of water on Monday.

Fifty-three people are still missing and authorities hold grave fears for 12 of them.

Premier Anna Bligh says 86 towns and cities have been affected by the flood crisis, but she is hopeful the wild weather has ended for the time being.

“I hope and pray that Mother Nature is leaving us alone for us to get on with the job of cleaning up and recovering,” she said.

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