Residents of Beerwah and Landsborough clean up after a massive storm hit on Saturday. This picture was taken at a house on Sidney Dr.
Residents of Beerwah and Landsborough clean up after a massive storm hit on Saturday. This picture was taken at a house on Sidney Dr. Warren Lynam

'Sick to my stomach' Coast desperate after storm devastation

THE Sunshine Coast Council said it had been on the ground since Saturday following the vicious storm that ripped through the region, but a Landsborough resident disagrees.

The very thought of the devastation and destruction left behind by the weekend's vicious storm, makes David Brace want to vomit.

The husband and father of two said while his family was lucky, several families and residents of Beerwah and Landsborough were suffering severely after the merciless 15-minute storm ripped through homes and destroyed property.

He said it had been five days since the event and was disappointed that the council was "nowhere to be seen".

"There are so many people out there that need help.

"I think a lot of the Coast community just have no idea how bad these homes were hit, some people can't live in their homes any more, some were without power for days.

 

Landsborough's Dave Brace has been helping his neighbours after the storm and would like to see more assistance from governments.
Landsborough's Dave Brace has been helping his neighbours after the storm and would like to see more assistance from governments. Warren Lynam

"There are pensioners out here who have no means of firstly, cleaning up all of the debris and secondly, being able to afford all of the costs that come with fixing damaged property, and transporting green debris waste.

"And what has the council done to help?"

He said the Sunshine Coast Council's efforts in allowing residents to dump their green waste from the storm for free (initially) for a week was not good enough.

He said the council needed to offer more services to those in need, or at least provide transportation services to those who have no means of dumping hundreds of kilos of green waste.

"If this storm hit a bigger suburb, it would be called a natural disaster," Mr Brace said.

"Some people who are on holidays or work FIFO - will get home to absolute disaster, their home destroyed and have no idea.

"And they will miss out on the council's free dumping services, and no help will be offered to them."

On Monday the Sunshine Coast Council said it had 50 crews and contractors working across the region, with 20 of those crews assisting residents in the affected areas. 

The Sunshine Coast Daily asked the council whether it would extend its free dumping services from the initial one week December 18 time slot.

On Tuesday, the council announced free green waste dumping at both Buderim and Beerwah Resource Recovery Centres for residents affected by the storm but kept the week time limit.

However on Wednesday, the council extended the free services until December 31.

A council spokesman said the organisation has had its disaster recovery officer in the region all week.

"Amongst other things we have been assisting with logistics with produce growers with damaged crops, liaising with organisations such as GIVIT, Red Cross and St Vincent de Paul, and  still have 14 council crews deployed in the area," the spokesman said.

"At last report, council clean-up operations were still active across 21 streets in Landsborough and Beerwah."

But Mr Brace said he hadn't seen anyone from council checking on residents, "not even a single door knock".

"Pre-election they came door knocking but post-election...nothing," Mr Brace said.

"We need help now; some people have no means of transporting the trees and debris in their backyards. Some people have so much it that it is even a couple of metres high.

"When I look at all the work that still has to be done, and the lack of help the community has received, I feel like vomiting - sick to my stomach."

State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle said those affected by the storms had not been forgotten about.

He said on Monday he visited residents and areas affected by the storm.

"I apologise that I could not see everyone who was impacted by the weekend's storms but from what I have seen in the areas I did visit the damage is extensive," he said.

The MP said he contacted Anastasia Palaszczuk's office, council CEO Mr Michael Whittaker and the Department of Agriculture and the QLD Reconstruction Authority.

"It was heartening to see how our community bans together in difficult times. I have seen neighbours helping neighbours and I encourage everyone to continue to look out for one another while we pull through this."



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