Prologue (01 February 2011):
Queensland is once again bracing for another natural disaster.
In the next 24 hours or so, North Queensland, centered on Cairns, will be hit by what is predicted as possibly the worst tropical storm ever. Experts are saying that Cyclone Yasi is comparable to Hurricane Katrina that hit the US in 2005. This superstorm looms just after the floods last month, the worst natural disaster in Australia's history.
Can it get worse?
With a measly 35,000 words this post has to be one of the longest blogs ever. This is a photoblog, and if a picture's worth a thousand words, and there's at least 35 photos here, you can do the maths :-).
|Path of the flood. From Toowoomba to Brisbane is about 140km as the crow flies.|
|The orange balloons mark flooded areas.|
|The blue lines are the approximate centre threads of the rivers Lockyer, Stanley, Brisbane and Bremer (in Ipswich).|
On the two days of the peak of the floods (13-14 January 2011), I voluntarily reported to the floodzones, albeit i was still officially on leave. At some stage in the future, I might be involved in delineating some of the extents of the floods.
During the floods, the authorities have been pleading with people to stay off the streets and away from the flooded areas. But the term 'rubbernecker' exists for good reason. Some people just have the desire to have a look.
Lest I be mistaken for a rubbernecker, and to look like an official, I took out my Maritime Security Identification Card (MSIC ID card issued for working in the Port of Brisbane).
Many graphic, striking, and unforgettable images have been shown on TV and news outlets and will stay imprinted in many people's memories for a long time. The photos below are not of the devastation - we've seen enough of those - rather to show the extents of the floods - how high and far and wide(vertically and laterally).