Much of NSW is facing torrential rain and thunderstorms in the next few days, with severe weather and flooding expected.
The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning for heavy rainfall for the mid-north coast from Thursday.
Towns likely to be affected include Coffs Harbour, Port Macquarie, Taree, Woolgoolga, Sawtell, Bellingen and Dorrigo. The rain band will move south, towards Sydney, on Friday and into the weekend.
“This is a potentially dangerous and developing weather situation,” BOM meteorologist Sarah Scully said.
As catchments are relatively full on the mid-north coast, flash flooding and flooded rivers are possible.
Heavy rain is expected in the Lower Hunter, Sydney and Illawarra areas on Friday and Saturday, while strong and gusty winds and larger waves may also develop from Friday.
Parts of Sydney could receive 100 millimetres of rain on Saturday alone, with further warnings for other areas.
“Isolated parts of the mid-north coast could get up to 200 millimetres in a day. It’s not out of the question,” BoM meteorologist Helen Kirkup said.
Residents and visitors in affected areas should monitor weather warnings in the coming days.
It has also been bucketing down in Queensland. Rockhampton reportedly had more than 500 millimetres of rain in the 24 hours to Wednesday morning.
Earlier warnings for the Capricornia coast have been cancelled as the rain has eased on its way south. However, there are flood warnings for numerous rivers and creeks across the state.
On Wednesday, there were numerous rescues in the small Queensland Central Highlands town of Sapphire as river heights rose rapidly to above major flood levels.
Up to 215 millimetres fell into the Retreat Creek catchment, rapidly pushing the creek – which skirts the southern end of the Queensland Central Highlands town – to a major flood level.
By Wednesday afternoon, floodwaters had retreated and locals were beginning to mop up.