WARNING: Prepare for more severe thunderstorms
THE Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe thunderstorm warning for Grafton and parts of the Clarence Valley for the third day in a row.
The warning issued at 2.34pm today advised people of parts of the Northern Rivers, Mid North Coast and Northern Tablelands that severe thunderstorms were likely to produce large hailstones and damaging winds in the warning area over the next several hours.
Locations which may be affected include Grafton, Copmanhurst, Coutts Crossing, Nymboida, Ulmarra, Glenreagh, Baryulgil, Jackadgery, Tabulam, Mallanganee, Rappville and Whiporie.
The nature of the warnings and predicted path of the storm events are similar to the previous two days, which saw a spectacular storm cell sweep across the Clarence Valley from south to north, predominantly west of Grafton.
On Sunday, hail was reported at Copmanhurst in a storm that swept around and completely missed the city of Grafton between 4pm and 5pm.
Exactly 24 hours later a series of inter-connected storm events merged to form a wide band of heavy rainfall, this time with Grafton directly in its path. However, it was short-lived, with the 17mm recorded in the 24 hours to 9am this morning at the Trenayr Agriculture Research Station gauge north of the city one of the highest readings recorded in the catchment.
The Bureau of Meteorology rainfall radar again indicates some isolated showers associated with the approaching storm, but residents are unlikely to experience significant totals.
More thunderstorms and hot weather are forecast for the remainder of the week.
The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
- Move your car under cover or away from trees.
- Secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony.
- Keep at least 8 metres away from fallen power lines or objects that may be energised, such as fences.
- Report fallen power lines to either Ausgrid on 131 388, or Endeavour Energy on 131 003 or Essential Energy on 132 080, as shown on your power bill.
- Keep clear of creeks and storm drains.
- Don't walk, ride your bike or drive through flood water.
- If you are trapped by flash flooding, seek refuge in the highest available place and ring 000 if you need rescue.
- Unplug computers and appliances.
- Avoid using the phone during the storm.
- Stay indoors away from windows, and keep children and pets indoors as well.
- For emergency help in floods and storms, ring the SES (NSW and ACT) on 132 500.
For the latest updates and information click here.
7.30AM, TUESDAY: Early reports of hail at Nymboida and surrounding areas had residents of the Clarence Valley ducking for cover as a large storm front covered Grafton around 5pm on Monday.
With a deep black cloud, pockets of rain splashed across the city as the front moved further north into Monday night.
And despite the wishes of local farmers desperate for some rain, the storm provided a spectacular light show, and not much more, with rainfalls quite low across the valley.
The highest fall recorded by the Bureau of Meteorology was at the Trenayr Agriculture Research Station gauge, recording 17.4mm since 9am Monday morning.
In contrast, the Grafton Airport rain gauge only collected 2.6mm in the same period.
Various areas throughout the valley received small rainstorms, with Coaldale recording a 15mm fall from the storm.
By the time the storm reached Yamba, it only provided 4mm of rain.
The Bureau of Meteorology is forecasting rain and possible storms for the next three days, with temperatures in the mid 30s, followed by extreme high temperatures on Friday and Saturday of 38 and 39 degrees respectively before some Sunday showers bring a little respite.
MONDAY, 5.30PM: The storm system that was developing in the parts of the Upper Clarence Valley has hit Grafton with heavy rainfall and continuous thunder.
The three distinct cells producing rainfall reported earlier have since merged creating a wide band of heavy rainfall across the region, currently stretching from the Pillar Valley in the southeast to east of Tenterfield in the northwest.
Clarence Valley residents can expect conditions to clear up by morning, with a fine day predicted tomorrow. However, according to weatherzone.com.au there is a small chance of a thunderstorm tomorrow and Wednesday.
EARLIER: The latest Bureau of Meteorology images paint a mouth-watering picture for storm chasers and equally nervous wait for residents with three individual storm cells gathering force in close proximity to Grafton.
A major wet weather event has passed through Nymboida and is heading north towards the city, while another isolated storm exists north west near Jackadgery and a third has significantly grown in magnitude in the past hour to the north of Grafton, west of Maclean.
These events are the first signs of significant storm activity predicted in the region this evening.
A severe thunderstorm issued by the Bureau of Meteorology at 2.44pm today warned large hailstones and heavy rainfall and damaging winds were likely over the next several hours in parts of the Mid North Coast, Northern Rivers and Northern Tablelands.