One Hundred Australians Missing after Floods

One Hundred Australians Missing after FloodsSidney, Jan 15. -Australia´s Prime Minister Julia Gillard stated that more than 1,000 soldiers have been mobilized to seek about 100 people still missed after floods.

Those soldiers joined to other rescue brigades and volunteers who continue working in extensive areas of eastern Australia, devastated due to heavy rains that flooded over 1,500,000 square km (579 square miles).

Those works, the highest ones since 1974, when the same zone was hit by Hurricane Tracy, entail a remarkable effort due to the isolation of several localities, where about 200,000 people have been evacuated.

Authorities have not quantified yet the total number of victims, but according to preliminary reports they are above 30, and material damages were estimated at about 5 billion USD.

The states of Queensland and Victoria are the greatest damaged regions, among them the city of Brisbane, with nearly two million inhabitants, as well as coal mines and large areas of crops.

Meteorologists expect rainfalls could decrease, still moderate rains in some regions, and its intensity was attributed to the La Niña climatic phenomenon, which cools water and causes sudden climate changes.

Australia, along with Philippines, Indonesia and Sri Lanka, are suffering from the devastating effects of weather since November, with long rainstorms and floods, killing one hundred people and millions in losses still not totally assessed. (Prensa Latina)