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Rain lashes Sydney - and it's going to get worse

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Stephanie Gardiner

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Sydney hit with flash flooding

It will be a grim week ahead for Sydneysiders as meteorologists warn the city is expected to reach the monthly rain fall levels within one week.

PT0M0S 620 349

Sydney has been hit by intense rain this morning, with flash flooding around the city.

Before 8am, 17mm fell in just 10 minutes in the city centre, Weatherzone head meteorologist Alex Zadnik said.

Mr Zadnik said that, outside tropical areas, flash flooding was generally expected if 15mm or more fell in one hour, so this morning's rainfall was particularly intense.

Flash flooding ... Baronga Avenue, Queens Park.

Flash flooding ... Baronga Avenue, Queens Park. Photo: Nick Moir

"We've already got some minor flooding of low lying roads and the like and it's likely to become worse through today and tomorrow," Mr Zadnik said.

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There were long delays on Syd Einfeld Drive, Bondi Junction, due to flooding about 8.30am, the Transport Management Centre said.

Partly flooded ... Queens Park.

Partly flooded ... Queens Park. Photo: Nick Moir

Water was flowing over the road, delaying heavy citybound traffic, and motorists were urged to avoid the area.

Citybound commuters on the M4 were also being delayed by an accident at Eastern Creek.

Southbound lanes of the Eastern Distributor exit at Anzac Parade, near Moore Park, were closed about 7.45am due to flooding.

Weatherzone: Sydney radar




Herald photographer Nick Moir took pictures of water flowing over the road at Baronga Avenue, Queens Park, in the eastern suburbs.

A spokeswoman at the Transport Management Centre said there were some scattered delays on the train network this morning, but there were no major hold ups caused by the rain.

Mr Zadnik said there was also heavy rain near Sydney Airport, with 5mm falling in 40 minutes.

"The expectation is for the rain to become heavier through today, especially through the afternoon and night time.

"Heavier falls are likely to persist through Wednesday as well."

Sydney's average rainfall for April is 126mm, which is likely to be broken by falls this week.

"It's fairly likely that over the next three to four days we'll see that monthly average achieved," Mr Zadnik said.

"We should see over 100mm in the next three days, with the bulk of that falling today and tomorrow."

The wet weather was being caused by a deepening low pressure trough on the east coast, causing an increase in cloud and rainfall.

Weatherzone.com.au is owned by Fairfax Media, publisher of this website.

 

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45 comments so far

  • Gee, the decision to commission that desalination plant by the Carr-Iemma-Rees-Kenneally Government is not looking so bright now, is it?

    Commenter
    mad4modern
    Location
    auronzo di cadore, italy
    Date and time
    April 17, 2012, 9:25AM
    • What is your understanding of instantaneous water harvesting infrastructure, 2 buckets for every house? There have been times when drought has seriously depleted the dam. In March 1983, Lake Burragorang's level reached a low of 45.4% of capacity, only to reach maximum level in the mid 90s; as a consequence the gates were opened. Between 1998 and 2007 the catchment area experienced extremely low rainfall, and on 8 Feb 2007 it recorded an all time low of 32.5% of capacity. If Sydney's water supply were to run out, it would be a major economic as well as humanitarian disaster. The New South Wales State Government tried to reduce this risk by implementing water restrictions and constructing the Kurnell Desalination Plant. Heavy rains between June 2007 and February 2008 restored the dam level to around 67%. Despite this, Level 3 water restrictions remained in place until midnight Sunday 21 June 2009. On 29th February 2012, ABC television news reported that the dam was likely to overflow for the first time in 14 years, due to continuing heavy rain in the region. The dam did in fact begin spilling on Friday 2 March 2012.
      Inevitably Sydney will experience another lengthy dry spell, climate change or no climate change, it's just the nature - of mother nature. Then of course the desal plant will be everyone's best friend.

      Commenter
      Pragamtist
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 10:07AM
    • Give it a few years mate and it will seem genius.

      Commenter
      Daniel
      Location
      Glebe
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 10:23AM
    • For the pro-desal folks, please read the independent audit report before speaking for it.

      Commenter
      Boringpie
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 12:05PM
    • @pragmatist
      People are criticizing them because they sat on their hands for the 12 years they were in power and did nothing. The desal plant was a reactionary approach to a problem that was always there for an explanding Sydney. As Boringpie says, read the report!
      Instead of implementing grey water/tertiary treatment across the city, following the Greiner/Fahey governments example in Rouse Hill and saving more water than the desal pumps out at 100% capacity, they left it far too late and forced themselves into a position of wasted opportunity and millions of wasted funds and high water bills.

      Commenter
      the realist
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 12:51PM
    • I hate to contradict you 'Realist' but re-cycling and all the like is a very expensive otpion and which takes many decades to implement.
      It is also highly controversial with many voters upset at drinking re-cycled water.
      In addition, re-cycled water does not offer us real alternative water supply if Warragamba water supply failed to deliver (terrorism, virus or failure of infrastructure).
      De-sal does offer relative immediacy, a real 2nd source of water and slowly more and more recycling options will be added to the system to even further increase or water supply options.

      Commenter
      Econorat
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 1:26PM
  • ....Perhaps some good old-fashioned storm water harvesting was required instead, to drought-proof the city and state. Just like many were calling for, but none were heeded. Better to spend billions on a wasteful knee-jerk.

    Commenter
    mad4modern
    Location
    auronzo di cadore, italy
    Date and time
    April 17, 2012, 9:29AM
    • In fact it's already built, the Sydney Northside Storage Tunnel running underground from Middle Cove to Neutral Bay, built in 1999 designed to take up 'all' (yes all) of Sydney's excess stormwater. Of course the pollies wanted everyone to forget about it since they were busy rushing through the contracts for the desal plant...

      Commenter
      milesanddizzy
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 11:07AM
    • Yet, the water restrictions still remain! No washing off of hard surfaces e.g. driveways, patios, terraces, building walls and the like. When will these restrictions be lifted?

      Commenter
      Kale
      Location
      Sydney
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 12:25PM
    • The north side storage tunnel is for sewage not stormwater. During rain stormwater infiltrates the sewage system and increases the volume of sewage by something like 6 to 12 times normal sewage flows. Rather than discharge this raw diluted sewage to the ocean it is now stored in the tunnel.

      Commenter
      Stix
      Date and time
      April 17, 2012, 1:23PM

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