Risk-taking surfers hit the waves before TC Marcia hit the coast.
Risk-taking surfers hit the waves before TC Marcia hit the coast. INM

Surfers make the most out of Marcia's wild winds

SURFERS braved heavy rain and strong winds along the Queensland coast by taking to the waves during a tropical cyclone that battered the country, damaged homes and severed power links.

But that did not deter the die-hard surfers who thought the conditions were just perfect and hauled out their wetsuits and boards to ride the waves.

Across the state, 134 schools and 43 childcare centres closed - according to national broadcasters - however no fatalities have been recorded.

"At this stage, everyone is breathing a deep sigh of relief that there has been no loss of life," Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk told reporters in state capital Brisbane.

In Rockhampton, homes were left without electricity and long queues snaked out of the only fuel station left with power to run its petrol pumps.

A damaged house after Cyclone Marcia hit coastal town of Yeppoon  The fury of the cyclone drove Demelza and Shaun Bischoff out of their home, along with their three children.

"It felt like the whole house was going to crumble," Demelza Bischoff told Reuters, describing how storm damage had forced the family to move from room to room of their home.

"It started getting really bad, the tin roof started lifting and the ceiling blew out," she said. "Then we took shelter under the kitchen table with mattresses all around us."

Now back home, they put furniture and clothing in their garden to dry out in the hot sun.

Marcia was preceded by Cyclone Lam, which hit a sparsely-populated area of the Northern Territory just hours before.