NSW, QLD, Victoria weather: Cold front brings heavy rains, winds, flood warning

Australia’s southeast is in for a wet and windy weekend with a complex weather system bringing torrential downpours and flooding across multiple states, as temperatures drop again.

“We have seen soaking rain and strong winds right across southeast Australia during the past 36 hours and as a result, there’s fairly widespread minor to moderate flooding through the central west and southwest of NSW,” said Sky News Weather chief meteorologist Tom Saunders.

“But the heaviest rain is now shifting further north.”

The Bureau of Meteorology currently has severe weather warnings for damaging winds in place for parts of NSW and the ACT.

The warnings apply to people in the Illawarra and parts of the South Coast, Southern Tablelands, Snowy Mountains, ACT and Central Tablelands.

“A complex low-pressure system moving across the eastern Great Australian Bight and an associated trough and cold front are causing vigorous west to north-westerly winds across southeast NSW today,” the BOM said on Friday morning.

“Damaging winds with peak gusts of around 90km/h are expected about the high terrain and eastern slopes from the Alps and along the Great Dividing Range from Bombala to south of about Crookwell, and also over the Illawarra from the escarpment to the coast. These conditions may persist through into this evening before weakening overnight or before dawn on Saturday. Saturated soils in the Central Tablelands and Illawarra bring an increased risk of gusty winds toppling trees and powerlines.”

Locations which may be affected include Wollongong, Nowra, Bowral, Braidwood, Goulburn, Cooma, Bredbo, Adaminaby and Nimmitabel.

The band of heavy rain is now moving up towards northern NSW and southern Queensland, but a low-pressure system means showers will continue continuing across southeast Australia over the weekend.

BOM meteorologist Jonathan How said there was a potential for major flooding across parts of NSW and Victoria.

“Across the southeast, a number of troughs maintain those cold, blustery and showery conditions,” he said.

Tasmania, southern South Australia, Victoria and the western side of the NSW southern and central ranges can expect light to moderate showers until Sunday.

Further north, some parts of northern NSW and southern Queensland will see up to 20mm of rain on Friday and Saturday, but the rain band is expected to peter out by Saturday afternoon off the Queensland coast.

At the same time, cold air pushing up from the south will see the mercury drop below 15 degrees across much of the southeast by Saturday, after a warmer-than-average temperatures at the start of the week.

Showers will continue next week with a southerly forecast to bring showers to the NSW coastline – before another massive band of rain sweeps in from the west by Wednesday, in a repeat of this week.

“At this stage it doesn’t look quite as intense but still some moderate to heavy falls are possible during the next eight days.”

Over in Western Australia, showers and strong winds are expected around Perth early next week.

frank.chung@news.com.au

Originally published as Torrential downpour to smash east coast