Emergency workers are using boats and helicopters to rescue people from flooded parts of northern Australia where forecasts call for more heavy rainfall. (Andrew Rankin/AAP Image via AP)
Record rainfall triggering dangerous flooding in Australia is prompting another warning from officials: beware of wayward reptiles — such as crocodiles and snakes.
Nearly four feet of rain has fallen across parts of Northeast Australia in the span of a week, forcing officials to open floodgates at a dam near the coastal city of Townsville to prevent a river from overflowing.
The Australian Army has been deployed to deliver over 70,000 sandbags and rescue residents from their rooftops from the “unprecedented” flooding, Sky News reported.
Government officials on Monday warned that floodwaters could also contain crocodiles and snakes, since the animals may move around in search of a “quiet place.”
In this Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019, photo, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services crew members use an inflatable boat to pull residents through floodwaters at Hermit Park in Townsville, Australia. (Andrew Rankin/AAP Image)
“Crocodiles may be seen crossing roads, and when flooding recedes, crocodiles can turn up in unusual places such as farm dams or waterholes where they have not been seen before,” Queensland Minister for Environment Leeanne Enoch said in a statement. “Similarly, snakes are very good swimmers and they too may turn up unexpectedly.”
An Australian woman posted a photo on Facebook of a crocodile outside her father’s house in Mundingburra, located outside of Townsville.
“Cannot stress it enough to stay out of the water,” she wrote
Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology said that heavy rain could continue in the region until Thursday, and some areas could expect more than a year’s worth of rain before conditions ease.