Torrential rain in eastern Australia has brought mixed blessings for residents. Farmers say it is the best news for their crops in ten years, having suffered drought conditions that have turned Australia’s wheat basket into a dust bowl.
Large areas of New South Wales are under water after days of downpours left hundreds of rural properties northwest of Sydney cut off. More than a thousand people were evacuated, as the Castlereagh River threatened to breach flood defences.
But while they tried to keep dry in the east, in Western Australia some of that rain would not have gone amiss.
Soaring summer temperatures in the region have helped spark yet another bush-fire outside Perth, prompting authorities there to declare a state of emergency as flames threatened to engulf properties.
Forecasters are predicting more hot conditions in the coming days. Last week more than 30 homes were lost in a wild-fire near Perth.