Parts of Sydney told to prepare for flooding as ‘intense rainfall’ continues

Parts of Sydney could be battered by up to 50 millimetres of rain on Friday with flooding possible in the city’s outer north-west from Friday afternoon.

Bureau forecaster Agata Imielska said a deep low pressure system, along with a humid air mass over the state, is triggering potentially severe thunderstorms and “unsettled conditions” across Sydney and NSW.

Clouds and rain hang over Bondi Beach on Thursday afternoon.Credit:Jessica Hromas

“Intense rainfall can lead to flash flooding which we have seen on roads so people need to be really mindful to drive to conditions and be aware that things can change quite quickly,” she said.

Central Sydney is forecast to receive between 35 and 45 millimetres of rain on Friday, while in Penrith there could be up to 50 millimetres.

There is also a flood watch current for the Hawkesbury-Nepean Valley in north-west Sydney with the potential for minor flooding.

“It’s really important for those in the more flood prone areas to monitor conditions really closely,” Ms Imielska said.

“We’re not expecting anything like what we saw earlier in the year in March, but with the thunderstorms and flash flooding risk, things can change quite quickly.”

A severe thunderstorm warning has been issued for damaging winds and heavy rainfall for the greater Newcastle, Hunter, Central Coast, Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury regions, with flash flooding possible.

Richmond, in outer north-west Sydney, has received the largest downpour of rain across the city, recording almost 50 millimetres since 9am Thursday. At Sydney Airport, 35 millimetres was recorded.

The rainy conditions seen across NSW for much of November — resulting in widespread flooding in the Central West, Hunter and North Coast regions — are set to continue into next week.

“The good news is things will really ease and settle into the weekend, but we’ll still have [the] chance of shower through the weekend,” Ms Imielska

“We do still have that chance of possible showers through the week.”

Summer across eastern Australia is likely to be wetter than usual with the bureau earlier this week confirming La Niña was now established in the Pacific Ocean for the second year in a row.

During La Niña, the Pacific Ocean cools along the eastern equator near the Americas, coupled with warm waters in the tropics near Australia and south-east to north-westerly winds strengthen, driving clouds westward to Australia’s east coast

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