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Australia floodwaters still rising, police search for missing

03 April 2017

More than 6000 people have left their homes in northern NSW, as rivers rage with the rain dumped by ex-Tropical Cyclone Debbie, which pummelled Queensland earlier this week.

The NSW State Emergency Service performed nearly 400 rescues and responded to about 2000 calls for help at the height of the flood emergency after up to 740mm of rain soaked the region.

"We know it's very frustrating and people want to get back to their homes", she said on Sunday.

Lismore resident Zach Miller told The Huffington Post Australia that it was the biggest flood he has ever witnessed since moving to the area with his wife two years ago.

The city's siren was activated overnight warning residents to leave immediately.

Lismore mayor Isaac Smith labelled his town "a war zone" and as the water, mud and sewage began to subside, that was exactly how it appeared.

"The south side is underwater", she said.

The SES gave residents in Lismore's south, north and CBD the all-clear to return to homes about 2:30pm on Sunday.

At the worst of the flood, some parts of town sat submerged below nearly 2m of water.

Mr Morrow painted a dramatic picture of efforts overnight to save people from floodwaters in the north.

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While the man's home was in a flood-prone area, it's not believed he had physically entered the floodwaters. Another three people were confirmed dead - two in NSW and one in Queensland - on Saturday but police were still investigating whether their deaths were flood-related.

More than 500 homes were destroyed by the cyclone while nearly 30,000 properties in that region remained without power, the state government said.

River levels in some threatened communities are continuing to rise, even on a low tide, when they should be starting to drop, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Deputy Commissioner Mike Wassing said. "That's not a good sign for today".

"The sky is the limit", he said.

Around 20,000 people have been ordered to evacuate.

"We got told "this is a 100-year flood, you need to go".

Police are urging anyone with information in relation to this incident to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page: https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au/ Information you provide will be treated in the strictest of confidence.

The Logan River at Beaudesert reached 14.76 metres just after 5.30am on Friday, above the 13.9m record recorded in 1991, and isn't expected to peak until after 7am.

The area's much-loved Yatala Pie Shop fell victim to rising waters, while the new $15 million John Muntz Bridge was ripped apart by the raging Coomera River.

They're being warned to stay away from their homes for now to avoid the risk posed by polluted floodwater.

Australia floodwaters still rising, police search for missing