Residents in Victoria and New South Wales have been warned to prepare for a potential tornado threat – as Australia’s east coast is inundated with rain.
Sky News Meteorologist Alison Osborne said towns in north-west Victoria were at risk of a ‘tornadic supercell system’ on Thursday afternoon.
Echuca, Swan Hill and Mildura are at risk and the dangerous weather system could also extend into southern NSW.
“There is a risk of tornadic supercells, that means large hail, damaging gusts and isolated heavy rainfall,” Ms Osborne said.
‘This storm threat will rapidly diminish by the early hours of (Friday) morning. It will be less intense, but more broad.’
Sky News Weather has warned a possible ‘tornadic supercell’ could hit parts of NSw and Victoria on Thursday afternoon (pictured red zones most likely to be affected by severe tornado conditions, yellow less likely)
Three wet weather systems will bring heavy rain to NSW and Victoria this weekend (pictured, woman walking through the rain in Melbourne)
Forecasts show regions from NSW’s Cobar down the border to Victoria’s Mt Gambier are most likely to handle the dangerous weather.
Residents of south-west Queensland, eastern SA and most of central NSW and Victoria should also be on alert.
By Friday, when the system stalls, the zone of less severe tornadic conditions will cover most of NSW, Victoria and south-west Queensland.
A monster wet weather system saw a band of rain form across Australia’s east coast from the Gold Coast down to southern Victoria on Thursday morning.
Heavy rain also crept inland in NSW to the state’s central west, inundating campers preparing for this weekend’s Bathurst 1000 Supercars race.
Rain is expected to clear briefly on Thursday afternoon before a new system pushes east from WA, across SA and into NSW and Victoria, building as it moves.
Three incoming storms this week are expected to make this year the wettest on record in Sydney (above)
Friday afternoon’s storms (above) will see heavy rain fall across much of NSW and Victoria
The storm will also bring a cold front, meaning a chilly start to the weekend.
A third storm system will intensify rain in NSW and Victoria on Saturday and Sunday.
The storms are expected to worsen from Saturday afternoon as a belt of storms forms from south-west Queensland, stretching across central NSW and ending on the NSW coast.
The low pressure system is expected to bring particularly heavy rain to Bourke, Sydney and Bathurst.
Bourke already received a month’s worth of rain in just one day on Wednesday with over 39mm pouring over the fringe town.
The three storms will bring Sydney’s total rainfall this year to the highest ever recorded, smashing the previous record of 2,194mm set in 1950.
SES Victoria has issued several flood warnings for residents living near catchments that are already at capacity (images, SES’s map of flood warnings in Victoria)
The Bureau of Meteorology warned record rain means more communities are at risk of flooding again with catchments still bursting from flooding just a few weeks ago.
“We will start to see more of a flood risk as well as river flood risk over the coming days,” said Gabrielle Woodhouse of the Bureau of Meteorology.
“There is a lot of rain and… it falls in very, very wet catchments.”
Some flooded catchments are expected to see 100mm of rain.
Several flood warnings have already been issued for NSW’s inland waterways, but as of Thursday afternoon no one had been issued an evacuation order.
Residents near the Namoi, Darling, Culgoa, Lachlan, Birrie, Bokhara, Bogan, Macquarie, Murray, Edward and Barwon rivers have been warned to watch for signs of flooding.
The heavy rain is expected to ease in most major cities by the middle of next week (pictured, pedestrians in Sydney)
NSW Victoria has issued several flood warnings for people near catchments that are already at capacity (images, SES’s NSW flood warning map)
SES has deployed rescue teams in communities at high risk of flooding in the event of an emergency.
They have urged people in flooded areas to avoid driving through floodwaters.
Several inland dams are full or above capacity, including Burrendong at 118 per cent, Carcoar at just over 100 per cent, and Glennies Creek Dam in the Hunter region, which is also slightly above capacity.
The rain is expected to taper off in most major cities by the middle of next week.
FOUR-DAY DESIGNATION FOR LARGER CITIES
Thursday Partly cloudy. Max 19
Friday Partly cloudy. Min 7 Max 20
Saturday sunny. Min 7 Max 23
Sunday Chance of showers. Min 9 Max 21
Thursday shower or two. Max 23
Friday decreasing showers. Min 12 Max 17
Saturday Partly cloudy. Min 9 Max 16
Sunday Partly cloudy. Min 7 Max 18
Thursday Increasing showers. Max 21
Friday showers. Min 15 Max 19
Saturday Partly cloudy. Min 9 Max 16
Sunday Partly cloudy. Min 7 Max 15
Thursday shower or two. Max 15
Friday showers. Min 11 Max 20
Saturday shower or two. Min 8 Max 15
Sunday Partly cloudy. Min 5 Max 14
Thursday Rain. Max 16
Friday Rain. Min 10 Max 18
Saturday Increasing rain. Min 11 Max 18
Sunday Rain. Min 4 Max 13
Thursday Rain eases to showers. Max 20
Friday Showers increase. Min 14 Max 23
Saturday Increasing rain. Min 16 Max 23
Sunday Rain. Min 12 Max 18
Thursday shower or two. Max 22
Friday Partly cloudy. Min 15 Max 25
Saturday shower or two. Min 16 Max 26
Sunday showers. Min 19 Max 26
Thursday showers. Possible storm. Max 34
Friday shower or two. Possible storm. Min 26 Max 34
Saturday showers. Possible storm. Min 25 Max 34
Sunday showers. Possible storm. Min 24 Max 33
Source: Bureau of Meteorology