Tom and Lily Tamala with daughter Rosa Afaese of North Booval in their house that flooded.
Tom and Lily Tamala with daughter Rosa Afaese of North Booval in their house that flooded. David Nielsen

Twice hit is too much

HE was among the thousands of Ipswich residents who watched helplessly as their homes went under water, but that didn't stop Westside bus driver Tom Tamala fronting up for his daily shift the next day.

Daughter Rosa Afaese said her parents had been warned they would have to leave their home at Bergin Street, North Booval at lunch time last Tuesday.

She said they had got out all they could carry such as clothing and fridges.

Mr Tamala returned to the suburb in the early hours of Wednesday morning, only to find water up to the top of the house.

He said by Wednesday evening he and wife Lily were able to enter the home and start the clean-up.

So extensive was the damage, all the carpets had to be pulled up and the walls stripped back to the frames.

Sadly the family had finished renovating the home just before Christmas.

But by Thursday the Ipswich grandfather was back driving buses around the city.

Mrs Afaese said getting back to work had helped her father get his mind off the house.

“He loves driving buses,” she said.

“It made him so happy that other people were happy they didn't have to pay fares.

“It was good for him, the sightseeing. He would come back and say ‘you should see Brassall'.”

Currently staying with Mrs Afaese and her family in Redbank Plains, Mr Tamala said it was the second time the home had been flooded, the previous time in 2008.

He said this time they wouldn't stay on after the home was rebuilt.

“We have had enough,” Mr Tamala said.



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