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Australian town split in two by flood waters

Horsham has fish swimming in the streets as it is submerged by high water spreading to the state of Victoria.

Australian PM Julia Gillard surveys the flood damage from the open window of an army helicopter
Australian PM Julia Gillard surveys the flood damage from the open window of an army helicopter
Image: AP Photo/Murray Ware

AN AUSTRALIAN TOWN has been split in two by flood waters. The Wimmera River burst its banks and is expected to reach a peak of 3.85m today in the town of Horsham in Victoria.

The centre of the town now resembles “a large lake”, according to The Australian, and the river had cut one side of town from the other. Over 1,000 homes there were given emergency evacuation orders last night. The Sydney Morning Herald carries a colourful report of how locals spotted small fish swimming down drenched riverside roads. One man spoke of how the water had been rising at the rate of an inch an hour, for the past 12 hours.

An 8-year-old boy also drowned as a result of the high water. He fell into a flooded pond in Shepparton, 200 kilometres of Melbourne, according to Times Live.

The floods which have devastated Queensland in the last couple of weeks – they hit Brisbane last week – have now reached the state of Victoria. The South Australian State Emergency Service (SES) has said that it has deployed staff and volunteers to the state to help with sandbagging and evacuation procedures, particularly around Horsham. SES Chief Officer Chris Beattie said:

They will face a challenging task and will be confronted with devastating scenes but no doubt their presence will be welcomed by the many victims of flood-ravaged areas across the border.

This is the reaction of some Horsham residents on ABC (The Australian Broadcasting Corportation) as their town is divided by the floods:

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