NSW floods: Australians brace for more days of rain, wild weather

New South Wales residents in Australia are being warned to brace for another day of wild weather, with forecasters warning there is unlikely to be any respite for days to come.
For the next 12 to 18 hours the Australian Bureau of Meteorology has said there is no letting up in rainfall. Areas worst hit are expected to be the Mid North Coast, Blue Mountains and surrounds including western Sydney, parts of the Northern Rivers and Illawarra districts.

It follows a horror Saturday which saw the evacuation of thousands of residents across the state, including residents from four homes in Woollahra in Sydneys east when a rock wall partially collapsed in the rain.

Warragamba Dam spilled over capacity when it reached capacity at 3pm and further rises could occur.

* NSW Floods: Evacuations as state hit with 'record-breaking' amount of rain
* Heavy rain batters Australia's east coast, flash floods force road closures

STEVEN SIEWERT/Sydney Morning Herald
The Bureau of Meteorology has warned that rivers near Sydney are subject to flooding and the SES is urging residents to prepare for possible evacuations.

Overnight more than 100mm of rain fell in suburbs across Sydney, including the CBD, the airport, Olympic Park and Marrickville. However the heaviest falls were in Picton and Oakdale, where 160mm fell.

Meteorologist Gabrielle Woodhouse said another trough would move over inland NSW over Sunday evening and into Monday and Tuesday, brharapg widespread rain to the central and northern parts of the state.

This will shift to eastern parts on Tuesday and it may not be until Wednesday that we start to see a drying trend, she said.

Today things will also shift back up to the Mid North Coast again, which is already seeing fairly widespread flooding. That is going to lead to further river rises. So it is best for most people to stay up to date with information from the SES.

Sydney Morning Herald
Mark Garner, store manager in Gloucester, NSW, preparing the shop for floods.

Multiple evacuation warnings and orders were issued by the SES on Sunday morning, including a warning residents in Picton to be prepared to evacuate when instructed.

Flash flooding warnings are still in place in the Northern Rivers, Mid North Coast, Hunter, Sydney Metropolitan, Illawarra, and Central Tablelands districts. Roads are likely to be cut off by water, and there will be an increased risk of landslips.

Evacuation centres have been established in the Hunter and Mid North Coast.

Federal Finance Minister Simon Birmingham said it was not yet clear how badly the flooding and extreme weather will affect Covid-19 vaccine distribution, with phase 1B of the rollout set to start across the country on Monday.

The wet weather is expected to impact the state until late next week.

Clearly, there will be expected disruptions for many freight and logistics movements across NSW as a result of these floods, and vaccines are not exempt from that, he told Sky News on Sunday.

And so were working with our freight and distribution companies who are getting the vaccine from point A to point B to understand just how that will be impacted, and I expect that health department officials will have a bit more to say about that later today.

Birmingham said NSW was facing difficult times, particularly in regional parts of the state.Our hearts go out to those facing difficulty, he said.

The Prime Minister has made clear that [if] NSW requires assistance particularly Defence Force assistance, then that will be made available.

Flooding at Telegraph Point, near Port Macquarie.

Major flooding is occurring along the Hawkesbury River at North Richmond where the river level has been rising on Sunday morning.

Flooding is likely to be similar to February last year, when heavy falls saw the Windsor and Richmond bridges submerged for the first time in 28 years.

Among the worst hit areas this weekend has been Port Macquarie, where all Qantas flights in and out of the holidays destination have been cancelled after the airport was cut off by flooding roads.

A Qantas spokeswoman said customers will be notified about flight cancellations. They are monitoring the situation and making assessments every half hour.

Sydney Morning Herald

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