A year’s worth of rain falls in a day for drought-stricken Tibooburra in New South Wales

The drought-stricken community of Tibooburra in far western New South Wales is celebrating its wettest March day on record.

While heavy downpours have wreaked havoc elsewhere in the state in recent days, Tibooburra residents welcomed the rain after missing out for so long.

“I’ve nearly measured 140 millimetres, which in old scale is six inches. Our yearly average is seven so it’s been so lovely,” said the owner of Tibooburra’s Corner Country Store, Vicki Jackson.

Mount Stuart Station manager Jack Anderson said 115mm had fallen in the rain gauge by early yesterday afternoon.

Farmland in Tibooburra is underwater after the area received a year’s worth of rain in one day.(

Supplied: George Williams


Rain could set up a ‘good winter’

Moruya beef producer Keith Dance said farmers are preparing for more rain, with another 100 to 150mm forecast for the NSW South Coast.

“I think it’s the perfect autumn break. If we get a decent fall of rain now we’ll build decent subsoil moisture up,” Mr Dance said.

“It gets us set up for a good autumn which runs us into a good winter, following on from last season we had a pretty good autumn and winter after those devastating fires,” he said.

“More rain will make Moruya very wet but there’s high enough ground, even with another 150mm in the catchment it’d be a one-in-20-year event but we’d be OK.”

Other farmers ‘devastated’

The rain is devastating news for farmers in other parts of the state.

Farmers in the Hawkesbury Valley north west of Sydney fear major stock losses and critical shortages of feed as the flood crisis worsens.


Agricultural supplier Graham Williams has been moving stock to higher ground and says fodder has been hard to come by.

“Cattle are following me, making lots of noise and looking for me to give them some kind of dry feed which I can’t access until probably the end of the week,” Mr Williams said.

He said many farmers would not know the full extent of the livestock losses for days.

“I think we could find cattle caught in fences and all sorts of things once the water subsides, when we can finally see what’s happened.”

Dairy Connect chief executive Shaughn Morgan said the group expected more than 20 dairy farmers along the coast to have suffered major flood damage.

He also said minor flood damage was widespread.

“We’re aware there’s approximately 150 dairy farmers that have been affected in the region,” Mr Morgan said.

“I understand about 20 farms have been severely impacted, ranging from Oxley Island all the way up to Lismore and Taree.

“Today we’re looking at getting more heavy rain, up to 90mm. That’s massive.”

Dairy cows brought to safety during NSW flood
Rachel Nicholson and her family are relieved their dairy cows are safe.(

Supplied: Rachel Nicholson


Meanwhile, Edgar Muscat who has a turf farm on the banks of the Hawkesbury River at Freemans Reach has compared the inundation to the 1990 flood event.

Mr Muscat said he had experienced four or five floods in his 41 years of farming.

He said he was feeling “alright” but the bottom storey of his two-storey house was inundated.


“We don’t know what’s going to happen after the flood. We don’t know the damage yet, whether it’s damaged the farm,” he said.

“It’ll be a week’s time or so when the water goes down before the damage to the turf can be assessed.”

The polo fields on the Richmond Lowlands were quickly flooded as the Hawkesbury River spilled its banks over the weekend.

Adam Buchert, from the Windsor Polo Club, estimated about 200 ponies were evacuated from the various clubs in the area.

While the majority of the polo ponies were safely trucked to higher ground before the water levels rose, Mr Buchert said he had heard some harder to catch horses had to be left behind, and were later swum to safety by volunteers using jet skis and tinnies.

Other horses were taken to the Hawkesbury showground, only for the area to also flood. The horses were safely moved to the Castle Hill showground.

Mr Buchert said the polo community was “devastated” after a bleak 2020.

“The whole Hawkesbury was on fire alert, we then get COVID, so polo was cancelled, and now we’ve got floods,” he said.

“So it’s been a couple of pretty torrid years.”

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Hammer time: Brisbane falls for auctions in $17 million weekend

Brisbane’s new-found romance with auctions is fast becoming a serious love affair after a record-setting median sale price was clocked across the city on Saturday.

From the reported 39 properties sold under the hammer, according to the latest Domain data, almost $17 million in real estate was transacted with the average home selling for $1,247,500 – which is the highest recorded median price in the past six months of weekend auctions.

It’s a staggering figure that property punters say has cemented the widespread shift from private treaties, in line with Melbourne and Sydney. 

“Across Australia, we had 5.1 registered bidders on Saturday and across Brisbane we had an average of 8.1 registered bidders at every auction,” Ray White Queensland chief auctioneer Mitch Peereboom said.

“We also had an 87 per cent clearance rate, which is double what we were seeing just before COVID,” said Mr Peereboom.

74 Gordon Street, Gordon Park
74 Gordon Street, Gordon Park.

It paid off to go to auction, with Ray White recording prices achieved at auction were 11.7 per cent above the highest offer made during the sales campaign.

“The sale prices were extraordinary and competition between buyers is really driving those prices up. People see great results and that gives them confidence and auctions create more auctions,” Mr Peereboom said.

Across Ray White offices on Saturday one of the most exciting sales clocked was in the city’s smallest suburb of Gordon Park, where 16 registered bidders battled it out for a quaint five-bedroom Queenslander at 74 Gordon Street.

74 Gordon Street, Gordon Park QLD 4031

74 Gordon Street, Gordon Park QLD 4031

In the end, a young family forked out $1.41 million for the winning bid, a whopping $200,000 above the reserve.

“The market is moving and changing every week and, whilst we have a shortage of stock, we are starting to see more sellers come onto the market. The results speak for themselves,” said selling agent Douglas May, of Ray White Sherwood.

In Cannon Hill Meagan Muir, of Place Estate Agents Bulimba, sold a stunning premium family home at 89 Erica Street for a reserve-busting $1.325 million after a Sydney buyer beat seven other registered bidders.

89 Erica Street, Cannon Hill QLD 4170

89 Erica Street, Cannon Hill QLD 4170

“It ended up coming down to $1000 dollar bids and it took just seven minutes,” Ms Muir said.

“The buyers were so excited and they said they couldn’t wait to call Queensland home. It was an all-round fantastic auction.

“In fact, this weekend really cemented Brisbane as an auction-friendly place. Buyers are finding great transparency and they can openly see what people are prepared to pay.”

Ray White Ascot principal Dwight Ferguson put away one of the highest recorded transactions for the day after selling 34 Isedale Street, Wooloowin, for $1.9 million.

34 Isedale Street Wooloowin
34 Isedale Street, Wooloowin.

While nine registered buyers came out to bat, he said the bidding war ended up between a Sydney home hunter and a local, with the southern buyer walking away with the grand property prize.

“In the suburbs there were strong really prices on average and I suppose sellers see auctions as a benefit,” Mr Ferguson said.

34 Isedale Street, Wooloowin QLD 4030

34 Isedale Street, Wooloowin QLD 4030

In Murarrie, Tammy Dale, of Place Estate Agents Bulimba, sold the charming and almost century old cottage at 51 Woodanga Street for $930,000 in an auction she said wasn’t just emotional, but a happy-ever-after story for both the buyer and the seller.

“The buyer missed out on this home the last time it went up for auction [about a year ago] so you could tell she really wanted it. She ended up bidding higher than she originally talked about and, in the end, it was such a great outcome,” Ms Dale said.

51 Woodanga Street, Murarrie QLD 4172

51 Woodanga Street, Murarrie QLD 4172

“The sellers bought this house for $750,000 a year ago and while they spent a bit of money it was a great result.”

In Grange, Ray White Wilston principal Alistair Macmillan sold 78 Carberry Street  for a record-smashing $1.5 million after a battle between 12 registered bidders with a local family securing the prize.

“The highest sale price for an original Queenslander on a block over 800 square metres in Grange was $1.35 million, so we are absolutely delighted to have smashed that record,” Mr Macmillan said.

“The buzz around this auction was fantastic. There were close to 200 people in the backyard watching.”

78 Carberry Street, Grange QLD 4051

78 Carberry Street, Grange QLD 4051

Other top results included a spectacular five-bedroom home at 20 Seventh Avenue, Windsor, which sold under the hammer for $1.74 million through Garry Jones Homes, and a sophisticated unit at 95/2 Goodwin Street, Kangaroo Point, which clocked $1.52 million through Hugo Alexander Property Group.

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Farmers rejoice as widespread rain falls across parched southern Queensland

Queensland farmers and graziers who missed out on predicted rain from this year’s La Niña event are rejoicing after receiving widespread rainfall overnight.

Data from the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) shows in the 24 hours to 9:00am Wednesday, Roma received 105 millimetres, while Forest Vale near Mitchell recorded 111mm.

Areas further south, including Dalby, recorded totals of about 24 millimetres.

Grazier Noel Chiconi said he had received 76mm of rain over the past two days at his property, Taylors Plains, about 100 kilometres north of Mungallala.

“It looks like a good season is coming up for us.”

Mr Chiconi said it was fantastic to see widespread rain across drought-affected areas including the Darling Downs, Maranoa, and South Burnett, after the regions missed out on rain forecast for the La Niña weather event.

“We’ve been waiting for a while. They spoke about a wet winter last year, then a wet spring, then a wet summer,” he said.

Cattle farmer Brett Conroy said the grass was looking green on his property, 25km south of Roma, after days of decent rain, including about 55mm in the last 24 hours.

Mr Conroy said he hoped the wet weather had hit patches that were previously missed.

“The farming areas had sort of missed out on rain,” Mr Conroy said.

“There will be a lot of oats being planted now and I’d say hay crops will be sown.”

Mr Conroy said the rain had boosted spirits already.

“The landholders start spending a bit of money, buying new machinery or getting stuff fixed up,” Mr Conroy said.

Kogan resident David Young said he had received 51.5mm at his property.

“It normally goes around us. We are one of the people that generally missed out when things like this happen. But it’s been raining nonstop since Sunday night,” Mr Young said.

He said rain had made it difficult to get out of the driveway and had also put a hole in his dam.

“Unfortunately I’d just stocked the dam with fish,” he said.

“But I’m also finding mice washing past my feet as I walk down there.”

The wet weather has prompted BOM to issue a flood watch for parts of central and southern Queensland.

It said the Condamine, Balonne, Warrego and Barcoo rivers as well as Wallam and Mungallala creeks could see level rises due to possible isolated heavy falls.

Locals are being warned of localised flooding which could cut roads in the area over the next few days.

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Falls prevention & strength | Brisbane City Council

Date & time

Fri 5 Mar 2021
9:30am to 10:30am





Increase the strength throughout your entire body with our class focused on strengthening exercises using resistance bands and other small loose equipment. Strengthen and lengthen muscles, improve posture and balance while increasing overall stability of your body to reduce the risk of falls.

This is a GOLD event suitable for seniors.


No bookings required. For more information phone Suanne on 0414 437 616.


Yoga mat and towel.

Meeting point

Meet near the picnic tables close to the river.


Bulimba Riverside Park, 57 Addison Avenue, Bulimba

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ADP Private Payroll Estimate Falls Short of Expectations

Private payrolls grew by less than expected in February, according to data released Wednesday.

U.S. businesses added just 117,000 workers in February, data from payroll provider ADP indicate. Economists surveyed by Econoday had forecast job growth of 165,00. Other surveys had the forecast even higher.

January’s figures were revised up to 195,000 from the initial estimate of 174,000.

Manufacturing lost 14,000 jobs in the month, according to ADP. The services sector added 131,000.

Small businesses added 32,000 jobs, ADP estimates. Medium business, those with between 50 and 499 employees, added 57,000. Large businesses came in at 28,000.

The figures indicate that the official nonfarm payrolls will grow by 210,000, according to ADP. That number, which includes public sector jobs, will be released Friday.

ADP had a rocky year last year as its estimates consistently failed to track job growth amid the chaos caused by the pandemic.

February was a volatile month for the U.S. economy with the cold snap in the South West shutting down large parts of Texas and neighboring states, shuttering oil production facilities and many other businesses.

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WTA roundup: Top seed falls in Lyon opener

FILE PHOTO: Tennis – Gippsland Trophy – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 6, 2021 Russia’s Ekaterina Alexandrova in action during her semi final match against Estonia’s Kaia Kanepi REUTERS/Loren Elliott

March 2, 2021

Teen qualifier Clara Tauson of Denmark upset top-seeded Ekaterina Alexandrova of Russia 6-3, 6-4 on Monday in the first round of the Lyon Open in France.

The 18-year-old Tauson saved six of nine break points and improved her 2021 record to 15-3 with the victory in one hour and 32 minutes. Her next opponent will be Hungary’s Timea Babos, a 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 winner over Russia’s Varvara Gracheva.

Other seeded players in action included No. 2 Fiona Ferro of France, who rallied for a 5-7, 7-5, 7-5 win against Poland’s Magdalena Frech. Serbia’s Nina Stojanovic upset No. 6 Sorana Cirstea of Romania in 75 minutes. No. 8 Arantxa Rus held off China’s Wang Xiyu 7-6 (6), 6-4.

Qatar Total Open

Two-time champion and No. 8 seed Victoria Azarenka of Belarus rolled to a 6-2, 6-3 win against Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova in the opening round in Doha, Qatar.

Azarenka, who won the event in 2012 and 2013, saved seven of nine break points during the one-hour, 51-minute match. She will face either Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina or Germany’s Laura Siegemund in the second round.

Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit eased past No. 7 seed Jennifer Brady 6-1, 6-2. Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko crushed No. 5 Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands 6-0, 6-2. Spain’s Garbine Muguruza posted a 6-2, 7-6 (4) win against Russia’s Veronika Kudermetova. Germany’s Angelique Kerber was a 6-4, 6-2 winner against Turkey’s Cagla Buyukakcay. Maria Sakkari of Greece defeated Egypt’s Mayar Sherif 6-0, 6-3.

–Field Level Media

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Brazil unemployment rate falls to 13.9% in quarter through December

FILE PHOTO: A woman writes down on her phone a job opportunity from listings posted on a light pole in downtown Sao Paulo, Brazil, September 30, 2020. REUTERS/Amanda Perobelli

February 26, 2021

By Jamie McGeever

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil’s unemployment rate ended last year at 13.9%, figures showed on Friday, extending a recent dip as workers returning to the labor market found jobs, but the average jobless rate in 2020 was the highest since comparable records began in 2012.

That was down from 14.1% in the three months to November, statistics agency IBGE said, in line with the median forecast in a Reuters poll of economists and slipping further from the record 14.6% in the three months to September.

Brazil’s unemployment rate ended 2019 at 11.0%.

The average unemployment rate last year was 13.5%, IBGE said, up from 11.9% the year before and the highest since the series began eight years ago.

The IBGE figures showed 86.2 million Brazilians had work, up 4.5%, or 3.7 million people, from the July-September period, although still down 8.9%, or 8.4 million people, from the same period a year earlier.

The number of Brazilians officially unemployed in the three months to December dipped slightly to 13.9 million from 14.1 million in the prior three-month period, IBGE said, but that was up almost 20% from a year ago.

The under-employment rate fell to 28.7% from 30.3% in the July-September period, while the average underemployment rate last year was a record 28.1%, IBGE said.

The number of under-employed fell by 1.1 million to 32 million, IBGE said. That was still 22.5% higher than the same period a year earlier, or up almost 6 million more people.

The workforce stood at 100.1 million people, up 3.5 million from the three months through September, and the number of people out of the workforce entirely fell by 2.3 million to 76.3 million, IBGE said.

Compared with a year earlier, however, the workforce is still down 6.1 million people, and there are almost 11 million more people out of the workforce completely, IBGE noted.

(Reporting by Jamie McGeever; editing by Barbara Lewis)

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Coffs falls short on renewable energy, emissions targets

Despite taking a lead on climate action, Council has fallen shy of its ambitious targets to reduce carbon emissions and increase usage of renewables.

In 2016 Councillors voted to more than double a recommended target for renewable energy usage to 25 per cent and enact the Coffs Harbour Renewable Energy and Emissions Reduction Plan, with the installation of solar photovoltaic systems at council sites at its core.

The targets, which also sought to cut yearly CO2 emissions by 25 per cent, have remained unmet with a report showing emissions reductions reached 10 per cent in 2020 and renewable energy 3 per cent.

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The COVID-19 pandemic is listed as being a contributing factor in delaying the completion of 15 solar projects which would have greatly increased its renewable energy usage and helped reduce its CO2 emissions.

Past reports estimated that installation of the solar photovoltaic systems across the council sites would have boosted renewable energy usage to around 20 per cent.

Work on 11 of the solar projects has been completed and the rest are due to be finished mid-year with one of the largest being at the Karangi Water Treatment Plant.

Installation of LED street lighting is also complete, a move which has echoes of 2004 when the Coffs Harbour became the first in council in the country to install energy efficient lighting across the entire LGA.

The targets were outlined in Council’s six-monthly progress report from July to December 2020, which provides details on the progress of its Delivery Program.

The report, containing 294 operational activities, showed the vast majority were on track with 35 listed as needing attention, three as ‘Critical’ and 13 as ‘On Hold’.

The report will be tabled at today’s council meeting.

Through the Coffs Harbour Renewable Energy and Emissions Reduction Plan, Council is aiming to reduce its annual CO2 emissions by 50 per cent by 2025 and increase its renewable energy usage to 100 per cent by 2030.

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Worker dies after steel tank falls on man at Riverland business

A young Riverland man has died in a workplace accident that occurred in the regional town of Monash on Tuesday afternoon.

Police and emergency services were called to a business on Jury road just before 3.30pm, following reports that a steel tank had fallen on a worker.

A 27-year-old Renmark man died at the scene and SA Police said they will prepare a report for the Coroner.

Safe Work SA attended the site yesterday afternoon and investigations into the incident are ongoing.

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Debris from US plane falls from sky over Denver homes

Pieces from a US plane rained down onto Denver suburbs on Saturday, narrowly missing one home, after one of its engines suffered a failure.

The United Airlines plane safely made an emergency landing and nobody aboard or on the ground was reported hurt, authorities said.

The Federal Aviation Administration said in a statement that the Boeing 777-200 returned to the Denver International Airport after experiencing a right-engine failure shortly after takeoff.

Flight 328 was flying from Denver to Honolulu when the incident occurred, the agency added.

United Airlines said in a statement that there were 231 passengers and 10 crew on board. All passengers were to be rebooked on a new flight to Hawaii, the airline said.

The Broomfield Police Department posted photos on Twitter showing large, circular pieces of debris leaning against a house in the suburb, which is located around 40km north of Denver. Police are asking that anyone who was injured to come forward.

Passengers recounted the events that led to the parts falling from the plane, which began to unfold shortly after the plane full of holidaymakers took off.

The aircraft was almost at cruising altitude and the captain was giving an announcement over the intercom when a large explosion rocked the cabin, accompanied by a bright flash.

“The plane started shaking violently, and we lost altitude and we started going down,” said David Delucia, who was sitting directly across the aisle from the side with the failed engine. “When it initially happened, I thought we were done. I thought we were going down.”

Delucia and his wife took their wallets containing their driver’s licenses and put them in their pockets so that “in case we did go down, we could be IDed,” said Delucia, who was still shaken up as he waited to board another flight for Honolulu.

On the ground, witnesses also heard the explosion and were scared for those on board.

Tyler Thal, who lives in the area, told The Associated Press that he was out for a walk with his family when he noticed a large commercial plane flying unusually low and took out his phone to film it.

“While I was looking at it, I saw an explosion and then the cloud of smoke and some debris falling from it. It was just like a speck in the sky, and as I’m watching that, I’m telling my family what I just saw and then we heard the explosion,” he said in a phone interview. “The plane just kind of continued on, and we didn’t see it after that.”

Thal was relieved to learn no one was injured or killed from what he saw.

Video posted on social media showed a trail of smoke behind the plane as it flew through the air.

Kirby Klements was inside his home with his wife when they heard a huge booming sound, he said. A few seconds later, the couple saw a massive piece of debris fly past their window and into Klements’ truck, crushing the cab and pushing the vehicle into the dirt.

“If it had been 10 feet different, it would have landed right on top of the house,” he said in a phone interview with the AP. “And if anyone had been in the truck, they would have been dead.”

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the incident.

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