Greek Queenslander returns home

first_imgResidents of disaster struck Emerald, in Queensland’s central highland region, are returning to their homes, after worsening floods forced evacuations over Christmas and New Year’s. Local resident George Moisidis said the flood ravaged area, which received up to 160 mm of rain, is returning to normal. Mr Moisidis told Neos Kosmos his house was lucky to escape damages. “The flooding was bad, the weather was very strong, but my house is higher above ground so it didn’t have any damage,” he said. Mr Moisidis, who works for a farm further north of Emerald, said some of the crops, mainly grapes, were ruined, though most survived the ordeal. “In one town on another farm, they lost all their grapes, but here there is not much damage,” he said. “Rockhampton is very bad, it’s worse down there and there’s so much rain. Most people here are back in their houses; everything is normal,” he said. “I still feel very safe here; things are looking up.” Mr Moisidis’ neighbour and friend Jim Bechaz described the flooding as “a bit of a drama,” with supermarkets, hospitals and ambulances all unable to function. On the Western side of Emerald, Coles supermarket was one metre under water while Woolworths supermarket experienced floodwaters 30 cm high. The supermarkets are currently in the process of restocking and were expected to re-open this week. “You couldn’t get to the local hospital, you couldn’t drive there, you couldn’t get out of the airport from the Eastern side, if you were on the southern or western side you were stuck; the only way to the airport was by chopper,” Mr Bechaz said, adding that ambulances and doctors services were temporarily posted in different locations, though could not gain access to many areas due to roads being closed. The Capricorn Highway was reopened after 9am on Monday, as floodwaters receded. Mr Bechaz, who moved all his furniture onto his roof on New Year’s Eve to avoid flood damage, said the scene was “like World War III”. “There were choppers everywhere, with big bags to do food drops, especially in lots of outlying areas,” he said. “They’ve had to fly in supplies, they can bring stuff in from Townsville and from the north, but that’s the only way to come in”. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagramlast_img read more