Help­ing hand for cy­clone-rav­aged homes, pages 4-5

Ali­cia calls for dona­tions to help Biloela clean up af­ter TC Mar­cia wreaked havoc

Isis Town and Country - - Front Page - By MATTHEW MCIN­ER­NEY

DO­ING HER BIT: Eureka's Ali­cia Bar­ton is call­ing for dona­tions to take to Biloela on Fri­day to help the clean-up ef­fort.

THE hor­ror of watch­ing fam­ily mem­bers lose their homes has spurred Ali­cia Bar­ton into ac­tion.

Ms Bar­ton was safe and sound in Eureka, de­spite see­ing sev­eral trees on her prop­erty suc­cumb to ex-trop­i­cal Cy­clone Mar­cia’s strong winds.

But her mum Ann and two sib­lings in Biloela weren’t as lucky.

“A tree fell on mum’s place and the flood­wa­ter was about a me­tre-and-a-half,” she said.

“They couldn’t get back home for three days be­cause of all the flood­ing and road clo­sures.

“Ev­ery­thing in the shed is gone.

“It’s pretty sad. We’ve had a few cries on the phone.”

TC Mar­cia was a Cat­e­gory Five when it crossed the coast near Shoal­wa­ter Bay, but the sys­tem was down­graded to a Cat­e­gory One near Biloela.

Strong winds forced pow­er­lines and trees down but it was the flood­ing that ar­guably caused most of the dam­age.

Ms Bar­ton has her gloves and gum­boots ready to help the stricken town re­cover, and she is ask­ing the Childers com­mu­nity to help.

“Clothes, gift cards – any­thing you can spare,” she said.

“We’re head­ing up on Fri­day and we’ll be tak­ing a trailer. I’ve been on a few sites as well and the whole com­mu­nity up there is strug­gling.”

Ms Bar­ton said she in­tended to sup­ply the ma­te­rial not only to Biloela res­i­dents, but to the neigh­bour­ing com­mu­ni­ties that are strug­gling just as badly.

“This is the sec­ond time in two years they’ve flooded and it’s heart­break­ing to see,” she said.

“The big­gest prob­lem is they’ll never be able to sell those prop­er­ties. Who would want to buy them?

“It’s like Rock­hamp­ton and Gympie – both have had a few floods go through in the last few years.”

If you want to do­nate items, Ms Bar­ton said to ei­ther give her a call, or to leave goods at HD Me­chan­i­cal in town.

Phone Ali­cia on 0409 999 170.

PHOTO: MATTHEW MCIN­ER­NEY

PHOTO: MATTHEW MCIN­ER­NEY

HU­MAN KIND­NESS: Eureka's Ali­cia Bar­ton is call­ing for dona­tions to take to Biloela on Fri­day to help cy­clone vic­tims.

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