Thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes in the Australian state of Victoria after the worst floods since 1956 swept through the state.
SV (NIGHT) People evacuated by rubber boats and into ambulances. (4 shots)
SV Old man and with rescued dog and evacuees into church hall. (2 shots)
SV Pet duck jumps out of basket.
SV & CU Elderly woman assisted, crying. (3 shots)
LV ZOOM INTO GV Flooded main street.
AERIAL VIEWS of Seymour, flooded countryside and outer suburbs.
GV & MV Cattle from abbatoirs moved through flood water and being freed on higher ground. (5 shots)
GV & SV View from boat of flooded streets.
GV Partly submerged car.
GV Rescuer in dinghy PAN TO partly submerged van.
MV ZOOM OUT TO GO Submerged articulated lorry with load.
GV ZOOM OUT Flooded countryside.
Initials VS 16.17 VS 16.35
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes in the Australian state of Victoria after the worst floods since 1956 swept through the state.
The floods, which have caused havoc throughout the state for the past week (14-21 May), followed exceptionally heavy rain. The state's two major river systems, the Goulburn and the Murray, both burst their banks in dozens of places causing damage running into millions of dollars.
In the worst hit area, north-eastern Victoria, more than five hundred families were forced from their homes. Another three hundred were evacuated from the small town of Wangaratta after the Owens River flooded and in Myrtleford another one hundred families were moved to high ground for safety.
And in a reversal of nature the swollen Murray River began flowing backwards towards the town of Eucha after heavy flooding in the southern reaches prevented fresh floodwater from escaping onto low-lying countryside.
Meanwhile school schildren in the town were working alongside exhausted civil defence workers to build a six mile (ten kilometre) sandbag dyke to hold the floodwaters back.
In the state capital, Melbourne, severe flooding forced the evacuation of some families in the northern suburb of Maribyrnong. More than a thousand sheep were drowned when floodwaters swept through a suburban abbatoir.