Floodwaters recede in New South Wales

Feb. 4, 2012 at 6:44 PM

MOREE, Australia, Feb. 4 (UPI) -- With floodwaters receding Saturday, evacuees of some communities in northern New South Wales, Australia, had begun returning home, officials said.

About 500 people evacuated from their homes in northern Moree because of flooding this week have been allowed to return, the Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported.

The Mehi River level had dropped quickly and road access was restored to Moree Saturday morning.

About 300 Moree homes were flooded and about 10,000 people had been cut off by the flooding.

Erin Pogmore, a spokeswoman for the South Australian State Emergency Service, said the flood emergency continues and people should not return to their homes until it is declared safe to do so, ABC reported.

"There is still a risk of flood rescues needing to be undertaken," she said.

Much of northwestern New South Wales remained under water and water and emergency crews were preparing for more flooding farther inland as flood waters move from Queensland to Walgett, Brewarrina, Bourke and other towns.

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