Today's Coming Crisis Movie

Monday, March 5, 2012

URGENT EVACUATION ORDER ISSUED - Wagga Wagga in Southern New South Wales

The State Emergency Service and the police issued the order shortly after 10pm (AEDT).

The order, affecting central Wagga Wagga, comes as the Murrumbidgee River threatens to reach some of the highest levels since flood records began.

The Bureau of Meteorology expects the river to reach 10.8 metres by 7am (AEDT).

NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell is due to visit Wagga Wagga shortly, and tour disaster-hit areas with SES commissioner Murray Kear.

The heart of Australia's food bowl resembled a cluster of ghost towns yesterday after thousands of residents fled their homes amid the worst flooding in NSW in decades.

Many homes and businesses are under water, cars have been washed away and paddocks resemble lakes.

But the scale of the devastation is yet to be realised because residents cannot reach their flooded homes.

Meanwhile, an intense low developed off the southeast Queensland coast yesterday, with forecasters warning there was a 50 per cent chance of it becoming a cyclone.

Farmers are resorting to extreme measures to shift stock to higher ground - one in Wagga Wagga has housed 100 sheep on his front veranda.

While rain eased in inland NSW yesterday, the flood crisis - which covers three states - worsened.

A second man died when his car was washed off the road between Gympie and Maryborough yesterday.

About 5000 people have been evacuated in NSW and 2000 more are isolated. Read More