Australia’s capital cities are set to be drenched with heavy rain, thunderstorms and wild winds over the next few days which could lead to flash flooding and blackouts.
The Bureau of Meteorology warned on Tuesday night large swathes of the country will see severe thunderstorms over the rest of the week – but they should clear by the weekend.
Storms will likely peak on Thursday after a day of rain, but will make way for 25C sunshine in Sydney and 30C sunbaking weather in Brisbane.
Victorians will continue to endure wet weather until at least Tuesday next week, with 90 per cent chance of showers every day.
‘In the first significant storm outbreak of the season, severe thunderstorm warnings are expected with flash flooding a particular risk,’ Bureau meteorologist Miriam Bradbury said.
The weather is caused by a low pressure system moving across central Australia to the east coast and dragging down humid air down from the tropics, she explained.
‘The south east of South Australia, Victoria, central New South Wales and southern Queensland should see widespread and intense rain on Wednesday,’ she said.
The heaviest rain will be on the western slopes of the Great Dividing Range as the low pressure trough hit the mountains and is pushed upwards.
‘Severe thunderstorms are likely with the risk of hail, damaging winds and heavy rainfall that could lead to flash flooding,’ Ms Bradbury warned.
Rainfall in excess of 100mm is expected in this area between Wednesday and Friday – with rivers expected to break their banks and cause flooding in parts of NSW, Victoria and Tasmania.
‘Rain and flash flooding can cause particularly hazardous driving conditions and strong winds with storms have the potential to bring down trees and power lines.’
Victoria’s northern high country, including Malee and Wimmera, are at risk of severe storms that could bring up to 50mm of rain, flash flooding, large hail and damaging winds of more than 90 kilometres and hour.
The major risks on Wednesday include flash flooding for north east and central Victoria, the Barwon River area and Otway Coast, meaning towns such as Mildura, Shepparton, Bendigo and Albury-Wodonga could be affected.
On Thursday the heavy rain will shift over the Great Dividing Range and drench Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne while rain will also develop in over Perth.
Darwin in the tropics will be the only state capital to avoid being soaked.
‘Widespread three day rain totals of between 40 to 60 mm are expected in NSW, southern Queensland, Victoria and eastern Tasmania.’
The NSW storm season officially starts on Friday.
Emergency Services Minister David Elliott welcomed the delivery of a deployable Mobile Incident Command Centre to deal with any disasters.
‘It can be easily deployed to any location around the state, and further improves the NSW SES’ prompt co-ordination and response to natural disasters’, Mr Elliott said in a statement on Tuesday.
The SES is also getting new rescue vehicles, including six new ‘Unimogs’ which can operate in flood waters up to 1.2 metres.
The SES $56.4million fleet replacement program was on track to deliver 270 vehicles, 124 marine vessels and 95 trailers to some of the state’s most flood prone areas.
SES Commissioner Carlene York said her volunteers were preparing for a challenging storm season.
‘The difference between now and last year’s flooding is our dams are pretty full,’ she told Sydney radio 2GB on Tuesday.
‘We’ve had a lot of rain over the winter so the ground is pretty saturated … so it increases the risk of flash flooding.’
In a positive the wild weather is set to ease by the weekend.
Sydney will see a partly cloudy weekend with the mercury hitting maximums in the mid-20s on Saturday and Sunday but the sun will be out by Monday.
Melbourne will be a little colder with highs around 21C and showers could stick around until Monday.
Adelaide, Perth, and Hobart will also see some showers on Saturday and Sunday with maximums in the high teens.
And Brisbane will get some summer-like weather for the weekend with fine skies and the mercury pushing 30C.
THE WEATHER IN YOUR CITY THIS WEEK
Tuesday Partly cloudy 23
Wednesday A few showers Min 12 Max 23
Thursday Shower or two Min 13 Max 23
Friday Showers Min 13 Max 20
Saturday Showers easing Min 11 Max 19
Sunday Few showers Min 12 Max 19
Monday Shower or two Min 10 Max 19
Tuesday: Shower or two .22
Wednesday: Showers. Min 12 Max 20
Thursday: Shower or two Min 12 Max 18
Friday: Partly cloudy. Min 10 Max 17
Saturday: Partly cloudy. Min 7 Max 23
Sunday: Showers easing. Min 11 Max 19
Monday: Shower or two. Min 10 Max 18
Tuesday: Late showers. 23
Wednesday: Rain. Min 13 Max 18
Thursday: Showers. Min 13 Max 20
Friday: Showers. Min 12 Max 17
Saturday: Showers easing. Min 12 Max 18
Sunday: Showers. Min 11 Max 21
Monday: Shower or two. Min 11 Max 18
Tuesday: Late showers. 17
Wednesday: Shower or two. Min 8 Max 14
Thursday: Rain. Min 9 Max 15
Friday: Showers. Min 11 Max 17
Saturday: Showers. Min 12 Max 17
Sunday: Shower or two. Min 11 Max 17
Monday: Shower or two. Min 10 Max 16
Tuesday: Possible shower. 20
Wednesday: Showers, possible storm. Min 8 Max 16
Thursday: Showers, possible storm. Min 9 Max 18
Friday: Showers, possible storm. Min 8 Max 18
Saturday: Shower or two. Min 7 Max- 18
Sunday: Partly cloudy. Min 6 Max 20
Monday: Possible shower. Min 8 Max 19
Tuesday: Mostly sunny 23
Wednesday: Showers increasing. Min 14 Max 22
Thursday: Shower or two. Min 15 Max 25
Friday: Shower or two: Min 14 Max 25
Saturday: Partly cloudy: Min 13 Max 23
Sunday: Partly cloudy: Min 13 Max 25
Monday: Mostly sunny. Min 15 Max 26
Tuesday: Cloudy 21
Wednesday: Cloudy. Min 15 Max 23
Thursday: Showers, possible late storm. Min 16 Max 23
Friday: Showers, possible storm. Min 16 Max 26
Saturday: Partly cloudy. Min 15 Max 29
Sunday: Sunny. Min 14 Max 29
Monday. Mostly sunny. Min 15 Max 30
Tuesday: Sunny 33
Wednesday: Mostly sunny. Min 24 Max 34
Thursday: Partly cloudy. Min 24 Max 33
Friday: Shower or two. Min 25 Max 33
Saturday: Shower or two, possible storm. Min 25 Max 33
Sunday: Partly cloudy. Min 25 Max 33
Monday: Partly cloudy. Min 26 Max 33
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