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In photos: Thousands evacuated in Australia as flood threat worsens amid relentless heavy rains

Some 18,000 people have been evacuated and authorities plan to evacuate thousands more, as heavy rains and flooding continued to pummel parts of Australia’s east coast.The big picture: Rain has been falling across New South Wales, including state capital Sydney, and southeast Queensland since last Thursday, triggering flash flooding in many places. A natural disaster was declared in 16 areas. Prime Minister Scott Morrison told Parliament Monday, “Rains are expected for at least the next 24 and 48 hours.”Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.Many areas across #NSW currently resemble an inland sea. Once the rain stops & the water begins to reside, there will be a massive combined effort to clean up. However until that happens, listen to warnings, follow the @NSWSES advice, look out for family, friends & neighbours. pic.twitter.com/vhDqxkw40E— NSW RFS (@NSWRFS) March 22, 2021 A worker beside a main road inundated by floodwaters in the Richmond suburb of Sydney on March 22. Emergency services have conducted at least 500 rescues. Photo: Saeed Khan/AFP via Getty Images The overflowing banks of Sydney’s Parramatta River March 22. It’s the worst flooding in the region for 60 years. Photo: Saeed Khan/AFP via Getty Images Heavy flooding in McGraths Hill, Sydney, March 22. NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian told reporters, “I don’t know any time in state history where we have had these extreme weather conditions … in the middle of a pandemic.” Photo: Brook Mitchell/Getty Images A road is made impassable by recent rainfall on March 22, 2021 in Byron Bay, NSW, near the Queensland border. Photo: James D. Morgan/Getty Images Flooded farmland between near Lennox Head, NSW, near the state border with Queensland, on March 22. Photo: James D. Morgan/Getty Images Surfers take to the water during heavy rains in Byron Bay on March 21. Photo: James D. Morgan/Getty ImagesCamden Head on the Camden Haven River after 889 mm of rain at Comboyne since Thursday morning. Credit Lee HartshornePosted by Mid North Coast NSW SES on Sunday, March 21, 2021Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) swiftwater crews conducted six rescues in south-east Queensland overnight, including four…Posted by Queensland Fire and Emergency Services – QFES on Sunday, March 21, 2021COW RESCUED AMID NSW FLOODS Surf Lifesavers have rescued a cow that was washed away in floods near Taree. It was a…Posted by 10 News First on Saturday, March 20, 2021More from Axios: Sign up to get the latest market trends with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free

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