Category: World / January 29, 2013 12:09 PM EST
Widespread flooding in eastern Australia caused by torrential rains forced thousands of people from their homes and communities on Tuesday (January 29).
The floods, which are the result of Tropical Cyclone Oswald, have left 4 people dead, and the country’s insurers have declared it a ‘catastrophic event.’
"The latest information we have from the Bureau of Meteorology is that we are expecting a minimum of 9.5 metres to be coming through the Bundaberg and the Burnett River. Those flood levels will be one of the highest levels recorded for the whole of the Bundaberg and Burnett region. We are asking people, the main priorities at the moment on the ground is life and we really do implore people to go to the highest points, listen to the emergency service workers and their directions," said Queensland's Police Minister Jack Dempsey.
The death toll rose to four after a three-year-old boy was injured by a falling tree in Brisbane, while watching the floodwaters with his mother.
This is Australia’s second major flood in two years.
Emergency officials said the floods were severe, although not as widespread as the monsoon-like rains that devastated the area in 2011.
(Video Source: Reuters)