Stuart Steenstra with his dog Jayda in the kitchen of his flood-damaged home.
Stuart Steenstra with his dog Jayda in the kitchen of his flood-damaged home. David Nielsen

Floods won't beat David Street

ALMOST two weeks after the floods that devastated scores of Ipswich homes the clean-up is almost over and families are left to rebuild their shattered lives.

A walk down one of the most heavily-inundated roads – David Street in North Booval – reveals a community of people who have lost clothes, property and furnishings.

The houses have been washed and cleaned, but a faint smell of the flood still remains, and huge skips stuffed with rubbish which was once prized furniture and household items line the street.

But the families, some of whom still live in their gutted properties, refuse to be broken and have vowed to rebuild.

On the potholed and dusty David Street lives Stuart Steenstra, who is still overwhelmed by the community spirit during the clean-up, with some people putting on free sausage sizzles and dozens of volunteers arriving to help.

Mr Steenstra, who lives with his Rottweiler Jayda, had short notice of the imminent flood and only a few hours to grab a few possessions.

The water rose near the top of his doorframes and covered everything in a layer of mud and murky water.

But standing in the shell of his kitchen a fortnight after the disaster, Mr Steenstra is positive about the future.

“I came out a little better than most I think – I still have my walls – it’s a fibro house,” Mr Steenstra said.

Looking around at his home, Mr Steenstra smiled and said: “To have it looking like this is pretty good and I’m thankful it’s a pretty solid old house.”

The 58-year-old was covered for flood surge but not floods in his insurance policy but shrugged off the disappointing news.

“We’ve got to start from scratch; I lost everything,” he said. “But something like this shows you there are a lot of good people around.

“I think we’ll get over it – it’s only material things.”