Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk will travel to north Queensland to see the destruction wrought by Cyclone Debbie, after wild weather caused widespread damage across the state.
Despite the focus turning to southeast Queensland and northern NSW following the tropical cyclone, Ms Palaszczuk on Friday insisted isolated north Queensland communities had not been forgotten.
“We are trying to get in there as quickly as possible. Let me make it very clear – help is on its way,” she said.
On Saturday, she will chair a disaster management meeting in Brisbane before heading to the Mackay and Whitsunday region, which was severely battered by the storm.
The restoration of electricity is of particular concern, with 50,000 properties in the Bowen, Mackay and Whitsunday regions still without electricity days after Debbie crossed the coast.
It is slowly being restored to petrol stations and other essential services at Airlie Beach, after generators were brought in on trucks on Friday.
The Mackay district’s sugar crops have also been hit hard by the cyclone’s wrath, with industry figures estimating $150 million damage had been done to local canegrowers’ operations in the area.
Meanwhile, Ms Palaszczuk said southeast Queensland had seen unprecedented rainfall in the days after the cyclone made landfall as the Bureau of Meteorology put out major flood warnings for the Logan and Albert Rivers.
Beenleigh’s train station and the Yatala Pie Shop were two victims of the rising water levels, while the John Muntz Bridge, built in the past five years at a cost of $15 million to connect the Gold Coast to Mt Tamborine, was ripped apart by the raging Coomera River.