Saturday, January 15, 2011

Pinoys help flood-affected kababayans in Australia

BRISBANE, Australia – Filipinos affected by the massive flooding in Australia are now staying at evacuation centers while some have sought shelter with other Filipinos.
“Most Filipinos who were in risk areas have either fled to their friends' homes or have made it to the evacuation centers, 2 located in Brisbane,” said Jerome Somodio, a Pinoy who lives in Australia.
Somodio added that 2 families are actually staying with them now.
“One of them is my aunt. Her home was very close to the river. It’s actually under water right now. At the same time, we have other friends who live nearby who are experiencing floodwaters,” said Somodio.
Philippine embassy officials in Australia said the flood has affected 3,000 Filipinos.
Meanwhile, authorities and residents will finally be able to assess the extent of damage of the floods in Brisbane when floodwaters recede.
ABS-CBN News Channel’s Dateline Philippines reported that the flooding has killed 22 people. The death toll is expected to increase as rescue workers search homes and buildings submerged in water.
Australian officials have advised residents that more devastating floods may still hit the area.
Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard inspected evacuation centers and said the government is doing its best to help flood victims.
“There will be 7 additional helicopters available that will bring to 50 the number in Queensland, and that will mean 11 of those helicopters can be available to assist with search and rescue because were still worried about so many people who are unaccounted for yet,” said Gillard.

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