Region like a disaster zone
THE Tweed looked like a disaster zone yesterday, with rubbish, vegetation and debris scattered everywhere.
The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) said we could expect more rain, wind and flash flooding today before the system weakened and moved away tomorrow.
The widespread destruction evident yesterday gave an indication to the force of the storms that lashed the coast on Wednesday.
People were left picking up the pieces after the wild weather smashed windows, damaged homes and brought down tree branches across the region.
The State Emergency Service (SES) was inundated with calls as the weather brought down trees and powerlines.
Richmond-Tweed SES spokes- woman Libby Spash said people should remain on alert, but more evacuations were unlikely.
Up to yesterday afternoon, the SES had taken more than 500 calls for help.
“We had about 120 calls to Banora Point on Wednesday night and about 40 calls to the Murwillumbah area,” Ms Spash said.
“The biggest thing we are stressing is for people to not drive, walk or ride through flood waters because we've had some rescues as a result of this.”
About 16,000 homes across the Tweed went without power on Wednesday night.
Country Energy workers had difficulty conducting repairs yesterday due to continued wind and rain, but were expecting at least 100 homes to remain in darkness last night.
Two iconic Norfolk pines at Point Danger were brought crashing down about 9.30pm Wednesday, when winds of up to 100km/h whipped the coast.
People visited the site yesterday to see the two huge trees, which were later cleared away by Tweed Shire Council workers.
A Pigabeen family, the Johnsons, said they had been touring the region looking for destruction yesterday.
“We're doing a flood tourist drive,” Peter Johnson said.
He was at Point Danger with his children Moesha, 11, Seth, 8, and Indiana, 6.
Point Danger Volunteer Marine Rescue duty controller Shirley Williams said it was a shame the trees had come down.
“Those trees are about 100 years old,” Ms Williams said.
“But there is a lot of stone around them and you can see that their roots are very shallow.”
Ms Williams said during the storms waves of up to 16 metres had been recorded by the Waverider buoy, but that the device had then been swept out to sea.
“It looks like the Waverider has broken off,” she said.
A wind gust of 130 km/h was recorded at Cape Byron yesterday, the BoM said.
“Further destructive wind gusts exceeding 125km/h are possible along the coastal fringe with other small scale features during the next 24 hours to 48 hours,” they said.
Schools, beaches and sports fields are expected to remain closed today.
While the SES evacuated parts of Fingal, Murwillumbah, Condong and Tumbulgum, they said the rain had eased on Wednesday night, which allowed residents to remain at home.
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