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Stonehenge among towns damaged in outback storm

By Elise Worthington, Wednesday January 16, 2013 - 14:26 EDT
Audience submitted image
Two semi-trailers and a water truck were damaged in Jundah. - Audience submitted

The damage bill from a storm that hit two towns in Queensland's central west will run into millions of dollars.

The damaging winds and heavy rain swept through Jundah and Stonehenge yesterday afternoon, ripping roofs from homes and a school.

About 20 homes and the school were badly damaged, along with a local business.

Two semi-trailers and a water truck were overturned, along with a vehicle towing a caravan.

A number of cars and trucks were also over-turned but no one was injured.

Barcoo Shire Council CEO Bob O'Brien says around 80 per cent of buildings in Jundah have been damaged.

"The school would be certainly a significant bill," he said.

"Between the school, the council facilities and just general damage there's certainly a couple of million dollars worth of damage."

Ergon Energy says power has been cut to more than 500 customers from Jundah to Isisford in Queensland's central west.

Company spokesman Bob Pleash says crews are hoping to get power restored by this evening but conditions are difficult.

"The problem we're encountering at the moment following the storms last night is that some places have had up to four inches of rain," Mr Pleash said.

"Out in that country with black soil it makes it very difficult to move vehicles particularly heavy vehicles which is what we have to respond to these types of things."

Monique Rayment from the Jundah Hotel says the damage is significant but locals are taking it in their stride.

"When I walked around the corner half my Poinciana tree is sitting in the public toilet, so I've got a loo with a view," she said.

Local SES crews are now helping with the clean-up but emergency services say there are trees down across the area.

Mr O'Brien says council staff saw two tornadoes hit the town.

"The school is just quite amazing to see. It's like tin wrapped around trees, like Cyclone Yasi really," he said.

"We've cleaned up some of the major trees that have been giving us problems but tomorrow is all the loose items.

"There's a lot of debris around, especially tin and things like that so we don't really need another storm."


© ABC 2013

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