Parts of Australia’s third most populous city, Brisbane, were submerged in water Monday, after heavy rains caused severe flooding in several areas of the east coast and killed eight people.
The flooding in and around Brisbane is the worst since 2011, when the city of 2.6 million people was hit by a similar disaster described as a once-in-a-century event.
The latest death toll was a man in his 50s who drowned Monday after driving his car through pre-dawn floods in the Gold Coast town south of Brisbane, Queensland state police said.
Queensland’s emergency services warned of life-threatening flash flooding in parts of the Gold Coast.
Search and rescue teams carried out more than 130 rescues in the fast water in 24 hours, officials said.
All eight deaths reported from the flooding occurred in the state of Queensland, of which Brisbane is the capital. The death toll is expected to rise, as many people are still missing.
The search continues for a sailor in his 70s, who fell into the water from his boat on the Brisbane River on Saturday. Police are also looking for a man who went missing in the town of Goodna, west of Brisbane and another in another town of Esk, northwest of Brisbane.
South of the Queensland border, police on Monday (28/2) were looking for a man after officers heard him calling for help on Sunday in the town of Lismore, New South Wales state.
Police warned all businesses in downtown Brisbane along the riverbank to evacuate after a pontoon boat carrying a crane detached from its mooring upstream and drifted toward them.
Several emergency flood warnings were in place for the Brisbane suburbs, where 2,145 homes and 2,356 businesses were submerged on Monday. [ab/uh]