Australia

Queensland Weather: Homes Lose Roofs in Boxing Day Storm that was ‘Like a Mini Tornado’

Storms have left a path of destruction through parts of Queensland’s Darling Downs and Burnett, with roofs torn from homes, buildings damaged, and trees uprooted.

The storms hit yesterday afternoon bringing strong winds and heavy rain.

Locals in the town of Kumbia, near Kingaroy in the South Burnett, have spent the day clearing debris from roads and yards.

Brian Stevens said he has survived tornados in the United States.

“It wasn’t quite as bad as that but it was like a mini tornado,” he said.

“The wind was blowing the rain fairly horizontal.”

His home wasn’t damaged.

Valda Smith wasn’t as lucky — her home of 13 years lost its roof.

“I’ll need to find somewhere else to live, I don’t know what the owners will decide to do with it,” she said.

Damage to farm buildings in the town of Kumbia from a storm which hit on Boxing Day.

“I might have to find another little nest.”

Some of furniture and many of her appliances were damaged.

“My precious patchworking fabrics, they’re fine, they just need a wash,” she said.

Strong winds ripped off Nelson Bentley’s roof.

“They have just kept lifting on the roof until they snapped batons and just taken it right off onto the road,” he said.

“We were in the house just waiting for it to pass, we saw the tin on the road we didn’t know which roof it had taken.

“We’ve picked it up and have been pretty lucky cause a lot of the young people in the town have helped us pick the sheets up and the nails.”

More than 4,000 homes in the South Burnett lost power in the storm.

As many as 1,600 could remain in the dark tonight.

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