Exclusive to The Middle East Online
Edited by Nelly Tawil
A huge low-pressure system that brought flooding and strong winds to New South Wales over the weekend has combined with a king tide to bring a destructive high water mark, damaging homes and forcing people to evacuate.
The coast was battered by the wild weather leading to the evacuation of houses and a unit block along Sydney’s northern beaches, as towns from Lismore in the state’s north to Wollongong and southeast Sydney dealt with flooding.
Waves up to eight meters high rampaged along the coast, crossing 50 meters over the coastal road in Collaroy, seven houses and the unit block in the area were forced to evacuate, police said.
A number of properties have been damaged with backyards washed away, according to police.
“One of the properties along that strip actually lost an entire in-ground pool which had moved above five meters out to sea,” Inspector Jason Reimer said.
A number of sinkholes opened up last night along the foreshore and emergency services worked into the night to save the homes.
The SES said crews were heading into the area at first light to assess the damage.
One local resident, David said the erosion was immense.
“There is no beach at Collaroy,” he said.
“I wouldn’t be calling it Collaroy Beach anymore, I’s be calling it Collaroy Point.”
The damage spreads across the far south coast with reports of damage across the region.
The wild weather dubbed “stormageddon” has fuelled 5500 calls to the SES operations centre for emergency help and performed 120 flood rescues, half of which involve stranded motorists.
NSW SES acting Commissioner Greg Newton urged drivers to stay out of floodwater.
Leaky ceilings and water inundations formed the majority of calls out for he Batemans Bay SES over the weekend.
Meanwhile, the SES kept an eye on river levels on Goulburn as the “big wet” from an east coast low swept across the state on Sunday.
Deputy Controller for the Goulburn region Darryl Skinner said on Sunday they had attended some call outs for leaking roofs.
“We are obviously sending out the usual warnings to not drive or play in flood waters and there is the possibility of some low-level flooding here in Goulburn by later on this afternoon,” he said.
In the 24 hours to 9am Sunday, the Goulburn Airport weather station had recorded 37 millimetres of rain, Murrays Flat 44 millimetres, and Mt Gray 46 millimetres.