SYDNEY–Thousands of Victorian homes have been left without power after a storm swept the state with some regions being inundated by a month’s worth of rain in a night.
The State Emergency Service (SES) responded to 800 calls from midnight local time on Sunday night for assistance with trees that had been blown over, building damage and flooding.
More than 18,000 homes lost power overnight as regions in the state’s west received 50 to 80 millimetres (mm) of rain with Dudidwarrah, west of Geelong, was hit by a deluge of 99mm.
A severe weather warning from the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) remained in place on Monday with damaging winds, heavy rain and the potential for flash flooding expected to remain threat throughout the day.
“There is still a severe weather warning for much of southern and eastern Victoria for the potential for damaging winds and also local flash flooding as well,” the BOM said on Monday.
“That heavy rain should contract towards Gippsland later this morning and into the afternoon.”
An estimated 20mm of rain fell on Melbourne overnight, almost half the average rainfall for the entire month of April, with more expected on Monday morning.
“The heaviest rain should ease by late morning and also those winds should ease as well — currently we have gale force winds across the Melbourne area and also across much of southern Victoria,” Victoria’s Emergency Management Commissioner Craig Lapsley told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) on Monday.
Lapsley urged people to stay away from floodwaters, particularly children who are currently on school holidays.
Victoria’s alpine areas two months before the ski season begins.