NSW flooding: Disaster zones declared as 18,000 people evacuated in Sydney and mid-north coast

Some 10 million Australians were under a severe weather warning on Monday night – including major cities along the East Coast like Wollongong, Sydney, Newcastle and Grafton, also because the north-west of the state in areas like Cobar, Dubbo and Moree.

NSW flooding: Disaster zones declared as 18,000 people evacuated in Sydney and mid-north coast

Some 10 million Australians remain under a weather warning on Monday night as a gaggle of colliding weather systems cause flooding chaos across swathes of latest South Wales, resulting in dozens of communities being declared disaster zones and forcing quite 18,000 people to evacuate from their homes.

More than 800mm of rain has fallen in but every week in some parts of the Australian state , leaving a trail of destruction which stretched from the densely populated suburbs of western Sydney to the sleepy coastal towns of Taree and Kempsey, many kilometres away on the NSW mid-north coast.

As night fell on Monday, authorities within the state issued a flurry of latest flood and evacuation warnings, as rivers west of Sydney rose faster than expected, emphasising the danger had faraway from passed.The NSW premier, Gladys Berejiklian, described it as a “miracle” that no lives had been lost, but with another 50-100mm expected to fall across pasts of the East Coast again on Tuesday, and river levels still rising, thousands of Australians remained on high-alert.

The extent of the deluge shocked experts. Justin Robinson, a flooding forecaster for the Bureau of Meteorology, Australia’s weather agency, said it had been the “worst flooding that I even have experienced and that i have had to forecast” in 20 years within the job. Berejiklian said the floods were “an event which far exceeds what has occurred within the past 50 or 60 years”.

The floods come but 18 months after Australia was gripped by a bushfire crisis which saw towns levelled and dozens killed. Many of the places which have found themselves inundated by a record downfall were still recovering from that disaster.

“Some communities battered by the bushfires are now being battered by the floods, and deep drought before that,” Berejiklian said on Monday.“I don’t know any time within the state’s history where we've had these extreme weather in such quick succession [and] within the middle of an epidemic .”

In the town of Windsor, which sits on the banks of the Hawkesbury River on Sydney’s north-west fringe, volunteers filled sandbags for nervous residents hoping to guard their homes.One of them, Alistair Dent, a Windsor local, said the lads – who were mostly members of an area church – had stayed up throughout the night on Sunday and into Monday morning handing out some 150 tonnes of sand.

“I had a woman crying on my shoulder yesterday afternoon. i feel people are quite worried,” he said.In nearby Pitt Town, Aaron Schultz acknowledged the places where his shed, stables and cistern wont to be, while he prepared his property before evacuating. All of it had been submerged by Monday afternoon, and therefore the speed at which the water rose during the day had convinced him he needed to go away .

He still didn't know where he would be staying on Monday night, after the friend he had hoped to remain with was also forced to evacuate. “Somewhere distant from here,” he said.The bulk of the flooding had taken place in two parts of the state – both the outer western suburbs of Sydney and therefore the regional mid-north coastal areas around Taree and Kempsey.Berejiklian on Monday told reporters that some 15,000 mid-north coast residents had been evacuated, along side around 3,000 residents from western Sydney’s Nepean-Hawkesbury region.

“I am so relieved until now in time nobody has lost their lives, which may be a miracle given what we've been through, and that we actually need to take care of that,” the premier said.The NSW State Emergency Service had received some 8,000 involves help by the mid-afternoon, including an elderly woman with a broken hip within the town of Kempsey. within the north coast town of Telegraph Point, Megan Nourse said a flash downpour had flooded her range in 10 minutes, forcing her to swim through her own front room trying to seek out her son and daughter.

“We had to swim under the door frame. My son got the canoe out … we swam out there and he canoed us out, then he was canoeing back to our top-story lounge room and windows to urge our dogs out,” she said.Still, some had remained optimistic. Kate Fotheringham, from the state’s mid-north coast, was almost forced to delay her wedding after the venue was flooded. Instead, she was helicoptered into the location and posted a photograph on social media together with her new husband surrounded by floodwaters.

Some 10 million Australians were under a severe weather warning on Monday night – including major cities along the East Coast like Wollongong, Sydney, Newcastle and Grafton, also because the north-west of the state in areas like Cobar, Dubbo and Moree.

Much of the wild weather had been caused by the mixture of three separate weather systems: a tropical low off the Kimberley coast of Western Australia , a coastal trough sitting off the NSW coast, and a neighborhood of stationary high between Tasmania and New Zealand that had been pushing winds to the NSW coast for quite every week .