20 Dec 2023

Australia correspondent Karen Middleton

From Nine To Noon, 9:45 am on 20 December 2023
A motorist drives through floodwater as Cyclone Jasper approaches landfall in Cairns in far north Queensland on December 13, 2023. A tropical cyclone was building strength as it rolled towards northeastern Australia on 13 December, with authorities warning "life-threatening" floods could swamp coastal regions for days. (Photo by Brian CASSEY / AFP)


Cyclone Jasper has caused the worst flooding in and around Cairns in far north Queensland.

Karen Middleton says the Bureau of Meteorology is facing strong criticism for failing to forecast the massive rain event which dumped a year's worth of rain.

Many homes are without both power and water and are completely cut off by now-crocodile-infested flood waters.

 Meanwhile Sydney is suffering smoke inhalation from a fire burning 400km to the north-west of the city. 

Karen Middleton is chief political correspondent for The Saturday Paper