Severe thunderstorms menace flood-hit Queensland

Updated: 2011-01-20 10:05
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BRISBANE, Australia - Severe thunderstorms in flood-hit Queensland of Australia have kept emergency services busy overnight and hampered the reconnection of power to flood- affected homes, the Australian Associated Press (AAP) reported on Thursday.

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Severe storms rolled across the Lockyer Valley, west of Brisbane, from 7 pm Wednesday, then moved east to Brisbane, bringing damaging winds and lightening to the region and hail to Oakey, 160 kilometers west of Brisbane, the Bureau of Meteorology said.

It caused headaches for locals who just want to clean up, or get on with life after the floods.

Emergency services said in the 24 hours to 5 am on Thursday, they received 134 calls for help in Brisbane, the state capital, and 39 in Ipswich, west of Brisbane.

Queensland electricity supplier ENERGEX said 30,000 properties lost power and crews had to be redirected from flood restoration duties.

Power supplies were cut by high winds and more than 6,500 lighting strikes hit in the southeast areas of Queensland stretching from the Lockyer and Brisbane Valleys to Ipswich, Gold Coast and Brisbane.

Meanwhile, more thunderstorms are expected in southeast Queensland on Thursday afternoon and in the evening.