Saturday, 22 January, 2022

Flooding leaves family stranded in remote Australian Outback

Flooding leaves family stranded in remote Australian Outback

SYDNEY: Torrential rain has left a family stranded in the Australian Outback, with authorities warning the rescue could take days.

The family of two adults and two children was travelling through the remote Simpson Desert in the centre of Australia when their campervan became bogged down on Friday, reports AFP.

Responding to an emergency beacon, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) had to airdrop a satellite phone to communicate with the family due to flooding and the isolation of the area, about 150 kilometres (93 miles) northwest of the small town Oodnadatta.

"AMSA made contact with the heavily bogged campervan about 2:30 pm (Friday) and confirmed there were no injuries and had adequate supplies," a spokesperson said in a statement.

Police told national broadcaster ABC that although conditions were easing, overflowing rivers meant the family might be stuck until at least Monday.

"As the weather continues to improve, we will assess the best time to coordinate the recovery of the family and vehicle," police said.

Severe storms have swept through Australia recently, with the desert town of Alice Springs receiving its highest daily rainfall since 2001 earlier this week, turning the usually dusty Todd River into a swelling stream.

Wild weather has also triggered flooding and warnings in large parts of the country's south and east.

In the past few years, Australia has suffered increasingly extreme climate-fuelled droughts, wildfires and floods.