BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Severe weather has killed at least 10 people in the eastern Australian states of Queensland and Victoria, officials said Wednesday.
Three men, aged 48, 59 and 69, died after a boat with 11 people on board capsized in bad weather in Moreton Bay off the south Queensland coast on Tuesday, police said. Ambulances transported eight survivors to the hospital, and their condition is stable.
The Courier Mail reported that the men were on the 39-foot boat on an annual fishing trip.
Acting Queensland Police Chief Andrew Pilotto said those rescued were lucky to survive.
“The storm was still raging when they were rescued,” Pilotto said. “It was very difficult to survive in such conditions anywhere.”
Elsewhere, a 59-year-old woman was killed when a tree fell on Queensland's Gold Coast on Monday evening. The body of a 9-year-old girl was found on Tuesday in nearby Brisbane hours after she disappeared into a flooded storm drain.
The bodies of a 40-year-old woman and a 46-year-old woman were found in the Mary River in the Queensland town of Gympie. They were among three women who were swept away in the flooded river on Tuesday. Another 46-year-old woman was able to save herself.
Queensland Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll blamed “extremely difficult weather” for the tragedies.
“It's been a very dramatic 24 hours because of the weather,” Carroll told reporters.
Severe weather has battered parts of southeastern Australia since Monday, including Queensland and Victoria.
A woman, who has not yet been identified, was found dead late on Tuesday after flash floods receded at a camp in Buchan in regional Victoria. The body of an unidentified man who was camping with the woman was found late Wednesday, police said.
Also on Tuesday, a 44-year-old man was killed by a falling branch on his rural property at Caringal in eastern Victoria.
Thunderstorms and strong winds brought down more than 1,000 power lines in parts of Queensland and left 85,000 people without power.
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