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Australia’s East Coast Hit with New Round of Torrential Rains and Floods

FILE - A view of a flooded road following heavy rains in Lismore, New South Wales, Australia March 2, 2022.

Australia’s eastern coast has been hit with yet another round of devastating flash flooding.

The famous coastal retreat of Byron Bay in New South Wales state is underwater after two days of torrential rain, forcing shop owners to close their businesses Wednesday.

In the northeastern part of the state, flood waters are once again pouring through the streets of the town of Lismore after receiving some 400 millimeters of rain over a 24-hour period, causing a breach of the town’s levees.

Lismore was among the dozens of communities in New South Wales and the neighboring state of Queensland that sustained massive damage after heavy rains and subsequent flooding that began in late February and lasted for several days, killing 22 people. The floods left city streets and homes submerged under several centimeters of water, forcing emergency crews to rescue residents trapped in their homes, with many having desperately climbed onto rooftops waiting for help.

Australia’s east coast summer has been dominated by the La Nina climate pattern, which is typically associated with greater rainfall.

During a trip to Lismore to inspect the damage from last month’s floods, Prime Minister Scott Morrison acknowledged that the climate-related disasters are making Australia a more difficult place to live.

Some information for this report came from Reuters and Agence France-Presse.