Cyclone causes widespread flooding in eastern Australia

Extreme weather has caused disruption and damage in eastern Australia Credit: Reuters

Ex-tropical cyclone Oswald has brought widespread flooding and strong winds to eastern Australia.

A swathe of Queensland has been battered by gales and tornadic winds, as torrential rain and thunderstorms swept in.

Bundaberg, which lies north of Brisbane, has seen the worst of the flooding so far, where the local Burnett river has burst its banks.

Evacuations are in effect around the Brisbane area, and many homes are without power.

As the remnants of cyclone Oswald sank southwards into New South Wales, the Gold Coast area received more than a metre of rainfall in 24 hours, along with huge, damaging 10-metre high waves off shore in unusually high tides.

Surf spot Byron Bay recorded wind gusts of over 80mph.

The stormy conditions will continue to track southwards into the rest of New South Wales - to affect Sydney and Canberra into the early hours of tomorrow morning, Australia time.

The latest extreme weather follows a huge heatwave across the country earlier in the month and widespread flooding across Queensland two years ago.