A SEVERE weather warning remains in place for the Hunter Region
A trough of low pressure off the coast has pummeled the region with heavy rain and vigorous southeasterly winds.
Flash flooding hit on Monday morning and continued throughout the day. Williamtown recorded a whopping 48.4mm of rain in just one hour to 8am Monday.
Damaging winds, averaging 60 to 70 km/h with peak gusts in excess of 90 km/h continue to lash the coastal fringe.
The heavy rain and damaging winds are expected to ease during the afternoon.
Locations which may be affected include Newcastle, Gosford, Maitland, The Entrance, Woy Woy and Kulnura.
The rainfall has caused chaos on the region's roads.
- About 10am Monday emergency services had to close Industrial Drive northbound at Crebert Street, Mayfield East, due to flooding.
- The Weir Road at Barnsley, also remains closed due to rain. With rain forecast over the coming days Lake Macquarie Council expects the road to stay closed for some time.
- Due to flooding, Medowie Road between Nelson Bay road and Richardson road is also closed.
- There is water over the road on Boyd Boulevard, Brocklesby Road and Fullerton Cove Road.
- The Myall Way is closed due to flooding. Pindimar Road is also flooding in several places.
The RAAF Base Williamtown and Newcastle Airport airfield is also closed due to flooding.
The limited commercial flight schedule has been postponed and passengers booked on flights should contact their airline directly for more details.
The SES has been to four flood water rescues in just 24 hours, after motorists drove their vehicles into flood waters in separate incidents across the region.
In one early morning rescue SES crews and emergency services were called to Louisiana Road, Hamlyn Terrace..
Crews arrived to find a small sedan stuck in the fast moving flood waters across the roadway with one person still in the vehicle. Rescue crews assisted the vehicle to safety, and the driver thankfully suffered no injuries.
"An important reminder to please not drive through flood waters at all," a Central Coast SES statement said.
A livestock and equipment warning for the Hunter River downstream of Aberdeen has been issued.
Due to heavy rain falling across the Upper Hunter Catchment above Aberdeen over the last three days, there have been rises in the Pages and Dartbrook River Systems.
River flow is expected to cause rises two metres above normal flows at Muswellbrook late Monday evening. Increased flows may occur at Denman early Tuesday morning.
Land owners and farmers adjacent to rivers and creeks should monitor river levels and the weather and people in areas likely to be impacted by flooding should consider:
- Refraining from driving or walking through flood water
- Road closures and flood isolation may impact on work, family and educational commitments
- Monitoring emergency warnings and severe weather updates
- If your property is at risk of inundation, please raise moveable items, such as furniture, as high as possible onto benches or tables, placing electrical items on top
- If you are advised by an emergency services officer to evacuate, please do so
- Securing outside belongings and before leaving; turn off the power, water and take essential medicines and clothes with you
- Farmers should move machinery, livestock, pumps and fodder to flood free ground
For emergency help in floods and storms, call the NSW State Emergency Service on 132 500. In life threatening situations call triple-0 immediately
A hazardous surf warning also remains in place. With large and powerful sea swells of up to three and a half metres and strong winds forecast, conditions will be hazardous for coastal activities such as rock fishing, boating, surfing and swimming.
Joel Wiseman from Surf Lifesaving NSW said that conditions along the NSW coast are very dangerous and urged the public to exercise extreme caution.
"Surf conditions are extreme today and these hazardous conditions will continue into tomorrow," he said.
"We strongly recommend members of the public not to engage in risky coastal activities such as rock fishing over the next two days. If people put themselves in danger in these conditions, it could be very challenging for our surf lifesavers to rescue them."
The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
- Move vehicles under cover or away from trees.
- Secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony.
- Keep at least eight metres away from fallen power lines or objects that may be energised, such as fences.
- Trees that have been damaged by fire are likely to be more unstable and more likely to fall.
- Report fallen power lines to either Ausgrid (131 388), Endeavour Energy (131 003), Essential Energy (132 080) or Evoenergy (131 093) 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.
- Be aware that run-off from rainfall in fire affected areas may behave differently and be more rapid. It may also contain debris such as ash, soil, trees and rocks.
For emergency help in floods and storms, ring your local SES Unit on 132 500.
Wild weekend weather
THE region has been battered by storms over the weekend, with heavy rain recorded from Newcastle's coastline to the Upper Hunter.
SES crews were called out to more than 50 requests for assistance within 24 hours across the Hunter, with more weather-related incidents expected as the severe wind and rain continues.
While most call outs were for trees down and leaking roofs, a caravan park near Singleton suffered significant damage in Saturday nights' thunderstorms.
The park at McDougall's Hill saw damage to numerous cabins, with caravan awnings and roofs peeled open or left semi-detached by the strong winds.
"There was substantial damage, some of the annexes were just blown away," SES Northern Region commander Steve Patterson said.
"It was a multi-agency response with Police, Ambulance and Fire and Rescue called.
"Crews have been getting ready for this weather event since we got the warning from the bureau on Thursday. SES have been out and about doing a really great job. "
According to the Bureau of Meteorology the complex low-pressure system pushing across NSW brought more than 80mm of rain to Scone in a 24-hour period to 9am Sunday.
Murrurundi recorded 59mm in the same time period, while closer to the coast Barnsley saw 26mm and Merewether recorded 20mm.
"This complex system saw large storms and showers push across the Hunter," senior bureau forecaster Jordan Notara said.
"The outlook is not clearing up. We are expecting another 15mm along the coastline moving into Monday."
He said Newcastle residents could expect up to seven days of rain as winds start to move easterly, bringing coastal showers.
A marine wind warning remained in place for the Hunter on Sunday and surf conditions were expected to remain hazardous.
"There is still the potential for localised thunderstorms so we remind people to drive to the conditions, don't enter flood water and if you haven't already, secure loose items around your property because these are very strong bursts of wind," commander Patterson said.
For emergency help in flood and storms call NSW SES on 132 500.
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