Australia's Queensland flood recovery may take years: Taskforce leader

13:31, January 07, 2011      

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Some aspects of rebuilding infrastructure in Australia's flood-hit Queensland could take years, the leader of Queensland's Flood Recovery Taskforce, Major-General Mick Slater, said on Friday.

Slater is touring the flood-ravaged city of Rockhampton in Central Queensland to find out the situation on the ground first hand.

Australia's Queensland floods have caused damage to 22 towns and cities across the state and more than 200,000 people have been affected.

The flood disaster has shut down 40 mines in Queensland and damaged crucial coal rail lines.

"I think that we will achieve some things in a matter of months. But there are some aspects of the rebuilding of infrastructure that will take, potentially, years," Slater told reporters.

Rockhampton will stay flooded for a week and will be cut off from the state's south for several more days, as the Fitzroy river remains close to its peak, Mayor Brad Carter said on Friday.

The Fitzroy River at Rockhampton is still about 9.15 meters, not far below the 9.2 meter peak on Wednesday, Carter said.

"We are not going to see much movement, just a slight drop, so it will be a long time before many of our residents can return to their homes," he told Australia's TV station Seven Network.

Source: Xinhua

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