Dozens of people rescued as flooding continues in NSW, Queensland

Catie McLeodNCA NewsWire
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Dozens of people have been rescued and thousands more have called for help as major flooding continues to inundate parts of NSW.

In the past 24 hours, 146 calls for help have been made to the NSW State Emergency Service who have rescued eight people.

There have been 4726 calls for help and 142 rescues in total since the intense storms and wet weather began earlier this month.

NSW SES has said the vast majority of the rescues have been freeing people trapped in their cars after attempting to drive through floodwaters.

“We really want to put the message out there that the majority of the people are doing an amazing job, but with that many flood rescues yesterday we’re just really asking please don’t walk or drive through floodwaters,” an SES spokesman said.

There are now 20 flood warnings in place across NSW where heavy rainfall has flooded many of the state’s river catchments.

Major flooding continues along the Namoi River in western NSW where the front has reached Narrabri and was expected to peak in the town at 7.40 metres on Tuesday morning.

“In Gunnedah we’re currently doing a lot of resupplies. In Narrabri where the water is only just starting to fall we’re doing a lot of sandbagging,” the SES spokesman said.

Major flooding continues downstream at Wee Waa, where water levels are expected to remain near the current level for the coming week.

The SES spokesman said the Macquarie River at Dubbo was falling and there were no significant issues there.

But he said the water was still rising at Warren where SES volunteers were on the ground to help residents.

He said flooding had eased along the Hunter River around the Whittingham, Combo and Scotts Flatt regions, who have had their evacuation orders lifted.

“We want people to remain vigilant, we’ve got a big rain system moving in. The ground is saturated and the river is all full and it won’t take much for the water to rise,” he said.

The Bureau of Meteorology is warning of more widespread rain and storms developing over Queensland and Northern NSW on Tuesday.

Multiple weather stations across the two states saw between 15mm and 30mm of rain overnight on Sunday, while intense rainfall in northern Queensland meant Mackay copped a deluge of 305mm in the 24 hours to 9am on Monday

Rain developed that developed on the east coast on Monday is spreading to engulf most of Queensland and northern NSW on Tuesday.

Falls of between 50mm and 100mm are forecast for some areas until Wednesday, with lesser amounts further west.

Severe thunderstorms are also expected to develop, bringing the risk of heavy rainfall, large hail, and damaging winds.

Weather bureau meteorologist Jackson Browne said residents living on, or near, flooded rivers and creeks, especially in parts of northern NSW and Queensland, needed to remain vigilant.

“Heavy rainfall from these hit-and-miss storms will be an unwelcome addition to the sodden or flooded areas,” Mr Browne said.

“Dams are full and many catchments are either flooded or saturated, so any further rain or thunderstorm activity will lead to river rises and prolonged flood peaks.”

Meteorologists are warning that up to 100mm of rain could fall over parts of Queensland on Tuesday, with much of the state on flood watch.

There are now 11 flood warnings in place for the state including for the Macintyre River at Goondiwindi, which is in major flood and was expected to peak near 9.70m overnight to Tuesday.

The weather bureau is also warning of severe thunderstorms on Tuesday for the Darling Downs and Granite Belt and parts of the Central Highlands and Coalfields, Central West and Maranoa and Warrego districts.

People in parts of Northern Goldfields and Upper Flinders Forecast District should also prepare for severe thunderstorms on Tuesday.

People in the affected areas in Queensland and NSW are urged to stay across the latest forecasted warnings as many rivers are likely to experience flooding in the coming days.

Originally published as Dozens of people rescued as flooding continues in NSW, Queensland

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