NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN (ALMOST)
23rd February, 1954 : At least 22 people are dead as floods and a cyclone wreak havoc down the coast of New South Wales and Queensland. The cyclone was was one of the worst recorded in 80 years, and the heavy rains and winds have caused serious damage along more than 400 miles of the coastline. Thousands are homeless, major roads and railway lines have been washed out, and police and Army personnel have been rescuing families cut off by rising flood waters. Police believe losses in Murwillumbah alone will reach 1 million, and Casino farmers estimate similar damage. Looting has aggravated the problem, and people with dysentery, pneumonia and gastroenteritis are filling northern hospitals. Half the cane crop on the lower Clarence between Maclean and Yamba has been destroyed.