Weather Storm over NSW’s central west to move east

Storm over NSW’s central west to move east

thunderstorm lismore
A flooded street in Lismore on Thursday. There is another storm warning for NSW's central west for Friday. Photo: AAP
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Severe thunderstorms are moving eastwards through NSW, with much of central and eastern NSW expected to cop a drenching.

Western NSW has already experienced several hours of thunderstorms on Friday, just the latest in a wild week of weather for the state.

The state’s far north has been particularly hard hit in recent days.

Bilambil Heights in the Tweed Shire in the NSW far north recorded 190 millimetres in the 24 hours to 9am Friday.

The Northern Rivers town of Lismore faced heavy rain and flash flooding on Thursday night after being deluged earlier in the week.

Several areas across northern NSW had more than 60 millimtres of rain on Thursday night, while some areas got more than 100 millimetres.

The Bureau of Meteorology is concerned that saturated grounds in the north could lead to riverine and flash flooding over the next few days.

“The prime concern is flash flooding,” meteorologist Helen Reid said on Friday.

“Some of these thunderstorms can be quite intense and with so much moisture in the air it can come down all at once with a severe thunderstorm.”

But specific flood warnings mostly eased off late on Thursday after a dramatic few days, with minor or final warnings in place on Friday for a number of rivers including the Tweed, Wilsons and Gwydir.

The Orara River at Coutts Crossing and Glenreagh was still under a minor-to-moderate warning, while minor flooding of the Richmond River was subsiding.

Flood warnings have mostly eased across rain-soaked northern NSW and Queensland but a fresh thunderstorm warning has been issued for NSW’s central west.

The weather bureau’s Helen Kirkup said thunderstorms would drench the the mid-north coast, central coast and much of Sydney on Friday afternoon.

“But [in northern NSW] we’ll still have an environment conducive to the development of thunderstorms and there’s lots of moisture in that part of the world,” Ms Kirkup said.

She said riverine flooding in the NSW central west on Friday was unlikely but flash flooding was a possibility.

More thunderstorms are likely in northern NSW over the weekend.

The NSW State Emergency Service asked people to move their cars under cover and avoid floodwaters, secure loose items around their homes and keep at least eight metres away from fallen power lines.

The SES has responded to more than 2300 requests for assistance across NSW over the past eight days.

Over the border in Queensland, Gold Coast beaches will reopen on a case-by-case basis on Friday after being closed on Thursday for council workers to clear washed-up debris.