12 Jan '11, 5am

Brisbane besieged by once-in-a-century floods

BRISBANE, Australia: Australia's third-biggest city Brisbane was besieged Wednesday by once-in-a-century floods that could hit up to 20,000 homes, as the death toll in raging torrents rose to 12. Thousands of people took refuge with friends and central districts were eerily quiet as the river city of two million battened down for its worst deluge since 1893, as floods spread across vast areas of Australia's northeast. About 100,000 premises were without power and some residents headed to evacuation centres, as boats and floating restaurants broke their moorings and careered down the swollen Brisbane River, smashing into bridges. "We are bracing for a one-in-a-hundred-year flood," said state premier Anna Bligh. "We are bracing for a massive amount of water coming into this river system and it will flood thousands of properties." Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the magnitu...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/afp_asiapacific/vi...

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