Thousands go without power as heavy rains, lightning lash Sydney
Sydney: Thousands of Sydney homes were without power Saturday after severe storms hit Australia’s largest city, causing transport hold-ups, inundating vehicles with floodwater and delaying a national football match.
Heavy rains and lightning storms lashed parts of Sydney late Friday, with close to 60 millimetres (nearly two and a half inches) of rain falling in some areas.
In Sydney’s west, which experienced some flash flooding, one suburb saw nearly 42 millimetres fall in a short downpour lasting just 30 minutes.
“It was a slow-moving storm with that warm humid air moving along the coast... that allowed for that increase of moisture,” Byron Doyle from the New South Wales Bureau of meteorology said.
Images of cars submerged in floodwaters on main roads, broken traffic lights and fallen trees circulated on social media. Energy companies reported that more than 40,000 customers were affected by power
outages at the peak of the storm overnight, with more than 5,000 still without power early Saturday.
Emergency services fielded over 1,000 requests for assistance, including nine flood rescues in the Sydney area. The rescues were “all for vehicles in flood water,” a New South Wales state emergency services spokesperson said.
A storm cloud is seen from a plane in Sydney, Australia