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2/3/11 - 18:13: Rescue operation disrupted by high winds

Rescue operation disrupted by high winds

2 March, 2011 - 18:13

The death toll rose to 160 today, as rescuers struggled to work against strong winds.

Superintendent Dave Cliff said high winds created a dust hazard, decreased visibility and also made some sites unstable.

"Some teams have had to be withdrawn from sites until conditions improve. They will be reinstated as soon as it is safe for them to continue," he said.

"The central city remains a highly unstable environment, the wind is not improving matters and we continue to stringently enforce the cordons."

A small number of residents had to be re-evacuated in Redcliffs after they moved back into their homes despite a cordon being in place.

Mr Cliff said plans were under way for staged access for people who needed to get inside the cordon in the city and to get people back into their homes, but people still needed to be patient.

He said people also still needed to keep travel to minimum to keep traffic down.

"We are doing all that we can to get things to a point where people can get access to their homes and businesses - please continue to bear with us."


ENDS

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