NSW Premier Mike Baird says the “crisis is not over” as emergency workers try to clear a backlog of jobs before this week’s predicted storms.
Four people died in the Hunter region in last week’s floods with the Central Coast and Sydney also heavily impacted following torrential rain and even hail at the weekend.
SES and other emergency service workers, who have worked tirelessly for the past week, will be given at least 2000 tickets for the opening State of Origin rugby league match on May 27 in Sydney.
“When you look out and see the blue sky, there is a sense … that the crisis is over,” Mr Baird said on Monday.
“I can assure you the crisis is not over.”
Widespread rain is forecast across NSW later in the week with fears it could hamper clean-up efforts.
SES Commissioner Adam Dent described the free tickets to the Origin match as an “amazing gesture” with a video tribute to be played prior to kick-off and volunteers invited onto the field to be honoured.
The SES has received almost 20,000 calls for help during the past week with 4,000 of those jobs still to be done.
“That puts this event absolutely squarely in the top-three events for request for assistance in NSW SES history,” Mr Dent said.
There are still more than 30,000 properties without power.
Mr Baird has appointed a former army officer to oversee the recovery efforts.
Brigadier Darren Naumann has been named regional recovery co-ordinator and will lead efforts in the Hunter region and Central Coast.
Two contingents of South Australian SES volunteers will travel to NSW this week to help with the clean-up.