News

Why locals can't return to Bundy's war zone just yet

FLOOD DAMAGE: The flood water swept one home away whilst its neighbour remains on Thornhill st North Bundaberg. Photo: Scottie Simmonds / NewsMail
FLOOD DAMAGE: The flood water swept one home away whilst its neighbour remains on Thornhill st North Bundaberg. Photo: Scottie Simmonds / NewsMail Scottie Simmonds

THINK of a war zone and there's a good chance you're imagining the scenes found at North Bundaberg.

Holes big enough for several buses to fall in litter the roads, power poles lay strewn about, cars appear to have been picked up and thrown around by an angry giant, a home sits on the main road out of town and the streets sink beneath your feet.

I was part of a very small group of journalists allowed access to the horror at North Bundaberg yesterday but it was no simple sight-seeing trip.

Police Inspector Mark Henderson said it was important to allow some media access to the zone to help people understand why they could not yet return home - and trust me when I say there's a very, very good reason.
I was a reporter during the Bundaberg floods two years ago and the damage is indescribably worse.

Walking along Thornhill St near the Hockey grounds to inspect a pile of cars that had been thrown about and tossed together by the water, the road began to crumble beneath me and we were forced to retreat and the precarious state of the infrastructure is the same in every street.

"As you are aware we've taken precautions coming across here today but I do want to get the message through to the public of Bundaberg, this is a big steep feat that you face and particularly those here from the north side," Insp Henderson said.

"The big dangers that we're facing here is the road as you can see has big sink holes in it, power poles with transformers have sunk into the ground.

"The ongoing dangers for people to be walking around here are just not worth the risk to public life. The property can be replaced but lives can't be."

Among the most shocking sights is a house that has been carried by the floodwater on to Queen St near the IGA complex and the twisted metal that was once the train tracks.

The damage to the Tallon Bridge is horrific, the twisted pile of metal and rubble is a devastating sight to see.

Insp Henderson said crews were assessing the safety of each building and as that was done, residents would slowly be allowed back in.

"I think the biggest shock for the Bundaberg people, again particularly those of North Bundaberg, is going to be the fact that unlike previous occasions when the water has subsided and they were simply allowed to walk to their places and try the best to get on with life, there are some inhibiting factors this time round," he said.

"It certainly has been worse as infrastructure goes and it has certainly created some dangerous situations we have to work through prior to allowing people back in."

Insp Henderson stressed that people were working as hard as possible.

"We really are urging people please be patient please bear with us another few days (and) we will start to let people in where we can," he said.

"The water has started to recede and there's little doubt about it and we can see that in front of us but what it's left is a tale of destruction to the roads and the infrastructure.

"It's left this area particularly of North Bundaberg very, very badly damaged and very, very unsafe."

Despite our police escort, we were in no way safe in the disaster zone that is North Bundaberg and while it's frustrating for people who want to get home and start the cleanup, this exclusion zone is set up with one goal in mind - keeping people alive.

Topics:  editors picks exclusion zone flooding north bundaberg oswald



Six hideaway bars to escape winter chill

THE last season of GoT finally uttered the words we’ve been waiting six seasons to hear and now that the weather has cooled down in Brisbane, “winter is here.”

Our six art gallery picks for a creative day out

Queensland's Gallery of Modern Art always has a fun, exciting and interesting exhibition on show for the whole family to enjoy.

YOU'D be mistaken in thinking Brisbane wasn't an arty city.

Brisbane's arts and culture events centre stage

You loved the film, now you're about to love the musical. Don't miss The Bodyguard The Musical in Brisbane this July.

THE arts and culture events you don't want to miss.

Homewares stores to fulfil your Instagram dreams

No Caption

You too can become an Insta-star with these fab stores.

Date nights under $50

Nothing is more romantic than a picnic with a cracking view.

NOT every date has to cost you a bomb.

Top 10 Brisbane experiences to cross off your bucket list

Do yourself a favour and get amongst the food truck scene. Eat Street is a great place to start.

A GOOD bucket list doesn’t have to span continents or cost millions.

Six mega sporting events you need to be at this year

Don't miss all the action trackside this season.

IF THERE is one thing Brisbane does damn well, it’s play host.

Push to stamp out smoking near kids

Tomorrow is World No Tobacco Day and the council is joining with local sporting clubs to make designated areas for smokers at sporting fields.

Football Bundaberg already telling spectators to butt out

New beers from Baffle to enjoy

NEW BEER: Baffle Creek Brewery is releasing three new beers later this year. Co-owner Bea Kangler said the new beers were very special ones.

WHO doesn't love a frosty cold beer?

Council approves giant slides for Bay water park

FUN IN THE SUN: The tender for the new 56m attractions was approved in by Fraser Coast Regional Council this week.

Tender for 56m-high attractions gets approval

Local Partners

Wonder Woman is a kick-arse superhero romp

WITH so much at stake, thank Zeus that Wonder Woman didn’t fall into the same trap as its DC Extended Universe predecessors.

Everything coming to Netflix, Stan, Foxtel and Amazon Prime Video this June

Orange Is The New Black returns for another season.

Find out what's being added to our streaming services in June.

Sam Armytage and Tom Cruise? Saaaaay what?

Apparently, the answer is no.

Musical tribute to flood volunteers released

Songwriter honours flood volunteers who helped their neighbours.

Lismore songwriter Simon Thomas was moved by strangers' kindness

Karl Stefanovic's rant about Schapelle Corby 'a bit rich'

Karl Stefanovic is sick of hearing about Schapelle Corby.

Maybe he just wanted to make himself the story.

Could Schapelle be heading for Gladstone?

Australian Schapelle Corby is escorted by Bali Police at the parole office in Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia, 27 May 2017.

Schapelle's mother teases her free daughter could be Gladstone bound

Six things you never knew about Men in Black

Mushu the pug

It's been 20 years since Men in Black first hit cinemas

New $46.7m counter-terrorism facility to be built in Wacol

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, pictured with Police Commisioner Ian Stewart, has announced plans to build a new counter-terrorism facility in Wacol.

The facility will be built over three years.

Home to a sex worker: Sordid history of iconic Coast shed

Milojevic Djordjevic's daughter Linda at the derelict shed on Yandina-Coolum Road.

The shed was once a liveable 'barrack'.

This is real estate's billion-dollar man

Bob Wolff at AREC with John McGrath of McGrath Real Estate.

They don’t call him the “Billion dollar man” for nothing

Man's amazing comeback from monster crisis

Pat O'Driscoll agents Penny Keating and Doug Webber sold 56 Agnes St, The Range at auction over the weekend.

NOT long ago, he sold his possessions to pay staff. Now he's back.

Report reveals progress on $319m airport upgrade

Aerials of the Sunshine Coast.Jetstar plane in front of the Susnhine Coast terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport.

Over two dozen government approvals needed for airport expansion

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!