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Archive for April 21st, 2015

‘Storm of the Century’ Batters NSW, Killing Three, Destroying Homes

Posted by feww on April 21, 2015

Deadly storms pound NSW, leave ‘whole streets decimated’

Powerful storms packing “cyclonic” winds  and torrential rains have battered the Australian state of New South Wales (NSW), killing at least three people, destroying many homes, and cutting power to hundreds of thousands of customers.

The deaths occurred in Dungog, where 312mm of rain fell in under 24 hours.

The worst affected areas are Sydney and the regions of Hunter, Central Coast and Illawarra, said officials.

“There is no doubt this is a very severe storm event, indeed it is a once in 10-year event,” said NSW Premier Mike Baird.

“We have lost some homes. There is a number of roofs taken off. We have also lost life. It is a huge storm event that is wreaking havoc across NSW.”

“We haven’t seen this sort of weather pattern, this east coast low or one as severe as this in years,” said SES Deputy Commissioner Steven Pearce told ABC News.

“The consistent gale force winds which are actually cyclonic in some areas with gusts up to 135km/h.”

“I haven’t seen a storm of this magnitude in my time here at the SES and, indeed, this would be the largest storm operation in the last 10 years,” he said.

“We’ve never seen these cyclonic winds last for 24 hours straight. That’s what’s caused the majority of the damage.

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“We’ve had over 6,500 requests for assistance and on top of that, with the enormous amount of rainfall – up to 320 millimetres in over 24 hours – we’ve seen about 80 flood rescues. We’ve seen homes washed away, whole streets decimated.”

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