AN AUSTRALIAN rugby league player based in Sheffield has spoken of his relief after his family survived the worst of the floods in his home country.
Dane McDonald was in constant touch with his parents and sister while the floodwaters and tropical storms swept across Queensland.
“Luckily my family are okay,” said Dane, who returned to pre-season training in the UK with Sheffield Eagles just after Christmas. The family are on the Sunshine Coast about 40 minutes drive from Brisbane.
“It has been hit quite badly by tropical weather but there hasn’t been much flooding so the family are safe.”
The Sunshine Coast, where Dane’s parents Rick and Jill and sister Bree live, was battered by tropical rainstorms for more than a week.
Dane said: “It disrupted life and upset people, they are facing the worst clean-up since the post-war. But they are quite tough and they’ll be okay. There’s a little bit of overflowing at the back of the house because of the amount of rain but the house is fine.”
The 23-year-old, who lives in Hillsborough during the rugby league season, said: “Naturally you are always concerned for your family but there are people in other areas that have been hit pretty bad and we got off with just lots of tropical weather.
“For the last 10 years people have been saying that this was coming and to prepare yourself and it has finally come.”
The Eagles’ new signing Quentin Laulu-Togagae’s move to the UK was also put back due to the disruption caused by the flooding.