Published on Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Hotels damaged after Cyclone Debbie slams Queensland
Australia's north-east coast is slowly beginning a clean-up today after been battered by Cyclone Debbie, which has left a trail of destruction in its wake.
At least one person is believed to have died and 50,000 homes and businesses were left without power overnight as the storm swept along the north Queensland coast.
Cyclone Debbie made landfall at Airlie Beach in the Whitsunday Islands Tuesday, bringing winds of more than 200 km an hour.
It caused extensive damage in the Whitsundays, including Airlie Beach, upmarket Hamilton and Proserpine.
One hotel in the Whitsundays, the Daydream Island Resort & Spa, said it suffered water damage, the roof has been blown off its spa and there is 'significant' damage to the resort's jetty and pontoon.
Another property, the Shute Harbour Motel, has been destroyed.
Cameron Berkman, a tourist caught up in the storm said it 'felt like we were underneath a freight train for most of the night.'
In the midst of the raging storm Queensland politician Mark Ryan tweeted: "Trees down in Airlie Beach and reports of windows shattering and some roofs starting to cave in."
The full extent will only become clear as rescue teams try to reach all affected areas but state police commissioner gave a stark warning.
"I think the public and the community of Queensland need to understand that we are going to get lots of reports of damage and sadly I think we will also receive more reports of injuries, if not deaths," he said.
That thankfully did not transpire at first light on Wednesday with no reports of fatalities, although several areas still remain cut off.