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Baby supplies helicoptered to outback mum isolated for days by floodwaters

By Harriet Tatham and Krystal Gordon, Wednesday March 7, 2018 - 06:53 EDT
ABC licensed image
Samantha Walton and baby Toby make the most of their time in McKinlay. - ABC licensed

While some mothers may shop online for baby supplies, few could claim having nappies and formula delivered by a helicopter.

But that's what happened to Samantha Walton when she and her family became stranded by .

Ms Walton and her fiancee, along with five-week-old baby Toby, were on their way back home to Rosebud Station, between Mount Isa and Cloncurry, from a holiday in Townsville when they became isolated in McKinlay after rising waters cut the roads.

"We've been stuck in McKinlay for two days now. With a newborn it isn't ideal," Ms Walton said.

Stuck in a town without a supermarket, the young family soon realised they had run out of baby formula.

"We thought we were going to have enough, but then we ran out," Ms Walton said.

But after a getting in contact with the local council, Ms Walton was relieved to hear that a helicopter was bringing her the crucial supplies.

"The early hours of the morning I heard from someone at council who again reassured us what we needed would make its way over on a helicopter," she said.

"McKinlay Shire Council have been very generous in flying a chopper out here for us with some supplies, and we've shared them with another young couple who have an 11-week-old baby as well.

With the floods still isolating the town of McKinlay, Mayor Belinda Murphy said it could be days until those stranded can get out.

"There is a lot of water to come down that catchments area, so those roads could stay closed again on Wednesday," Ms Murphy said.

But the mayor said while being isolated can be inconvenient, it's part and parcel of life in outback Queensland.

"Most people out here do still remember surprisingly what a wet season is like, even though it's been quite a number of years — especially out on our properties and out in our townships people are pretty resilient," she said.

Ms Walton agreed.

"Being so remote you either have to be really prepared and fully stocked, or be willing to try and make it work with what you've got," she said.

"That's outback Queensland," she said.

Ms Walton and her family have since been helicoptered back to another station.


© ABC 2018

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