As if we haven't had enough of wild and dangerous weather this year, the Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning for Sydney and other parts of NSW, forecasting a day of heavy rains, flash flooding and high winds. The BOM has warned that the intense low pressure system is building over central Australia and heading east, expected to intensify as it reaches the coast.
Flood warnings were issued on Monday for parts of eastern NSW, but since then a broader warning of wild weather has been issued. While Sydney has only had around 40mm of rain this month so far, today's storm is expected to dump anywhere between 60 and 120 millimetres on metropolitan Sydney, while the south-west and Wollongong may get as much as 150mm throughout the day. Winds with peak gusts of up to 90km/h will also be expected to hit the Greater Sydney region later today, only easing later on Thursday as the system moves further east.
UPDATE: #Severe thunderstorms warning for #Sydney has been issued for Very Heavy rainfall. Be safe on your commute to work and be up to date with all warning at https://t.co/JcTXaGV5JE pic.twitter.com/Y5wnMxoie5
— Bureau of Meteorology, New South Wales (@BOM_NSW) November 27, 2018
Emergency services across NSW are preparing for a busy day, with flash flooding, power outages and wind damage expected in areas of Sydney and the south coast. The SES recommends the following steps for residents who are likely to be affected:
- Move vehicles under cover or away from trees.
- Secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony.
- Keep at least 8 metres away from fallen power lines or objects that may be energised, such as fences.
- Report fallen power lines to either Ausgrid on 131 388, or Endeavour Energy on 131 003 or Essential Energy on 132 080, as shown on your power bill.
- Don't drive, ride or walk through flood water.
- Keep clear of creeks and storm drains.
- If you are trapped by flash flooding, seek refuge in the highest available place and ring 000 if you need rescue.
- For emergency help in floods and storms, ring your local SES Unit on 132 500.
With this kind of rapid, intense system, the worst of the weather should pass through relatively quickly, though conditions can change quickly and without warning. The BOM recommends checking back regularly as more information becomes available.
This warning comes only a week after NSW was hit with damaging winds across the state, and while central Queensland suffers bushfires and intense heatwaves. This summer is looking to bring more punishing and extreme weather than ever, and still little is being done by Australia's lawmakers on the increasing threat of climate change.
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