The city of Queanbeyan, south-east of Canberra, has been declared a natural disaster zone after experiencing its worst flooding in decades.
The Queanbeyan River peaked at 8.4 metres leaving the southern New South Wales city’s centre underwater.
Emergency Services Minister Steve Whan, who lives in Queanbeyan, says the city and neighbouring Palerang Shire have been declared natural disaster areas.
About 100 homes and businesses have been evacuated in Trinculo Place, Thorpe Avenue and Antill, Collett, Monaro, Wanniassa, Atkinson, Crawford and Carinya streets.
Many businesses have suffered significant water damage. Some witnesses have told the ABC the waters rose so quickly it was difficult to salvage their belongings.
Queanbeyan Mayor Tim Overall says it is too early to say what the clean-up bill will be.
The SES has rescued 10 people, ferrying them to higher ground by boat.
A crane had to be brought in to rescue caravans from the Riverside Caravan Park, while a helicopter was called to help a pregnant woman who was stranded.
But some people are simply enjoying the spectacle.
Queanbeyan had been in drought for many years and the overnight deluge and subsequent damage have stunned some locals who have not seen such flooding since the mid 1970s.
Thankfully, no one has been seriously hurt. But it’s going to take one hell of a clean-up effort to sort this out. It’s always the country towns here that seem to suffer the major disasters, it’s such a shame. Mark Webber just can’t get any luck, can he?