Trevor Burton and Andrew Mile, 4, point out how far the floodwaters reached on their home.
Trevor Burton and Andrew Mile, 4, point out how far the floodwaters reached on their home.

Second wave hits us hard

THEY are varied in nature and levels of damage but when it comes to the big clean-up, Albion Street businesses are sticking together.

“It's a good community up here,” Kylie Morton from Aquabird Pet Centre said as a band of helpers hosed down and swept out her store.

She was thankful her birds were up high and damage was minimal. A clean-out should be enough to get the pet centre back in action.

Another lucky escapee was Sue Hoffman, who owns Warwick's Gardens Galore and Warwick Motor Inn, next door to the pet shop on Albion Street.

She watched anxiously on Tuesday night as water crept up to the step of the garden centre but said careful preparation and a bit of luck stopped it from entering either of her businesses.

“We sandbagged the whole place and got organised,” Ms Hoffman said.

“We lifted our stock from the bottom shelves and organised ourselves, then took care of the guests we had staying at the motel.”

She said it would be business as usual from today.

Those on the other side of the street, who have been hit twice in three weeks, found it hard to be as positive.

Linda Bunch from Albion Street Auto Centre last week thanked all of those who helped them clear out and clean up the business on December 27, while she and her husband were stuck out of town.

After re-opening on Monday, the business suffered more water damage on Tuesday.

Mrs Bunch said they had managed to prepare for the flood but it would still set them back.

“If nothing else, it's just the loss of income,” she said.

“Our hoist motors went under water, so we'll need to see if that can be fixed.”

Shelley's Industries owner Bruce Shelley yesterday said he was looking for a good night's sleep after two sleepless nights, fearing the damage of the encroaching water.

“I didn't leave here until late and didn't get much sleep at all – I was up and down all night,” he said.

Despite a substantial amount of water entering his building, Mr Shelley was confident that his hard work moving equipment to higher ground had salvaged much of his property.

“It came through the door at 5.15pm and it was just gushing,” he said.

“We think we got everything up and we had a really good crew with us.

“We will just get the water out, let it dry and go from there.”

Around the corner in Fitzroy Street, Brad Steele of Steele's Bakery spent the morning hosing out the remnants of the dirty floodwater.

After opening for just three days following the last flood, Steele's Bakery was again closed and evacuated but Mr Steele said this time involved better preparation.

“We had about 12 hours more notice this time so we cleared the place out on Monday night,” he said.

Mr Steele said he was hopeful the bakery would be up and running again next week.

“We will probably move everything back in by the weekend and should be open by Monday,” he said.

Helen Harm was lucky enough to have two generous tenants offer their time and elbow grease to help the business owner clean up the debris from the water.

Jason Crofts and his son Ethan were on the business steps first thing yesterday morning with a broom and mop in hand.

“(Mrs Harm) did an inspection for us yesterday and mentioned that she had gone under the first time so we said we would give her a hand,” Mr Crofts said.

Mrs Harm said she was optimistic the walls of her property could be salvaged, although she was planning to replace her cupboards.


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