22 Jan 2011

Premier mucks in to help flood cleanup

9:53 pm on 22 January 2011

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh joined thousands of volunteers on Saturday cleaning up flood-ravaged Brisbane and nearby Ipswich.

Ms Bligh donned gumboots and joined members of her running group in a working bee at an apartment complex in the inner-city suburb of West End.

Covered in muck, Ms Bligh wielded a shovel to help clean out one of the courtyards in the complex, and was too busy to talk to the media.

Ms Bligh is one of many who have given up their weekend to continue the mammoth clean-up, which is expected to take months, and Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale says the emotional strain is taking its toll.

"I think people are tired now, they're fragile and there's a lot of issues in regards money and support," he said.

The southern inland town of St George is preparing for a second flood peak in the Balonne River on Sunday but it is expected to be lower than the one two weeks ago.

There has been no let up in the effort to find the people missing from the devastating floods in the Lockyer Valley, west of Brisbane.

About 400 police, defence, State Emergency Service and fire service personnel are involved in the search, clean-up and recovery.

The Queensland floods have claimed more than 30 lives since late November - 20 of those died in the south-east.

Nine people are still missing.