4 deaths in Flash Floods in Australia

Toowoomba is Australia's second largest inland city, and its largest non-capital inland city.

With an estimated district population of 128,600.
There are more than 150 public parks and gardens in Toowoomba
Elevation: 691 m (2,267 ft)
Toowoomba sits on the crest of the Great Dividing Range - a mountain range.

But today, right now in fact, flash floods have taken the lives of 4 people.

Four confirmed dead in Toowoomba flash flooding
Police have been able to confirm four people have died, including a female pedestrian who was swept to her death as flash floods struck Toowoomba, west of Brisbane.

May Madness: Invasion of the Giant Australian Barking Spiders

Beware the barking spider of Bowen, Australia!

Sophie in Sydney, reporting for the Times Online, tells of "scores" of eastern tarantulas, also known as "whistling" or "barking" spiders, have begun venturing about in public spaces in Bowen after heavy unseasonal rains pushed them out of their natural habitat.

Yes, the spiders are venomous. The spiders aren't considered "deadly" like other Australian spiders, but perhaps that's dependiing upon what one considers "deadly" -- something as big as those could likely scare a bloke to death without even having to hiss, whistle or bark, never mind actually biting anyone.  Often called "bird-eating" spiders, the eastern tarantulas don't actually eat birds, but "can kill a dog with one bite and make a human very very sick."

Reassuring, isn't it?

It's news like this that makes an Alaskan vacation look all the more appealing.