Areas of Australia see their worst flooding in decades – BBC News

our torrential downpours lashed australia's east coast on monday forcing thousands to flee the worst flooding in decades around 18 000 residents were told to evacuate their homes as days of relentless rainfall caused rivers in australia's most populous state new south wales to rise to their highest levels in 30 years emergency warnings are in place across the state including port macquarie kempsey and sydney's west heavy rains are expected to continue until wednesday the bbc's shyama khalil has been to the flood-stricken areas and sent us this report this is what days of relentless downpour looks like a deluge not seen in five decades here in new south wales emergency services have been inundated with nearly 10 000 calls and have conducted more than 500 rescues so far and this is what they're up against water's so high and forceful a three-bedroom cottage was seen floating through crews have also been called in to get stranded cattle to safety in the town of windsor northwest of sydney residents are used to floods this time of year but nothing like this it's very shocking because i haven't seen it like this before in 1990 was the last time that i remember having a really big flood it's hard to tell this is the newly built windsor bridge it's barely a year old and was meant to withstand heavy flooding this is how swollen the hawkesbury river gotcha can hardly make out the windsor bridge and with more rain forecast over the next few days things are set to get much worse before they get better thousands of families have already evacuated with many more ready to go for days now the wassens have been on high alert they tell me they hardly slept in the past 24 hours as they watched the waters inch ever closer to their property and submerged the whole of their back garden it's normally completely green and floats down to a dam but now it's completely inundated in the distance we can just see farmland but now we just see water it's not the first natural disaster to hit these areas in the past year some communities who were battered by the bushfires are now being battered by the floods and deep drought prior to that and i don't know any time in our state's history when we've had these extreme weather conditions many families will spend the night in evacuation centers and with the rainfall showing no sign of letting up there is no telling when they'll be able to get back to their homes shai mahalil bbc news windsor new south wales well here's our bbc weather reporter chris fawkes with a look at the forecast in new south wales for the next few days the rain really started coming down heavily on thursday last week and since then some areas have seen over 900 millimeters of rain so that's not far off a meters worth of rain very wet as well in sydney city center with 264 millimeters over the last seven days now this weather system as i say was stalled it was a trough that developed a line of thunderstorms and because the winds in the atmosphere didn't change direction so those severe thunderstorms just kept feeding in day after day hitting the same kind of area but now we're looking at a next area of low pressure crossing australia combining with that trough in the east to bring a final bout of very heavy rain across those same flood hit areas so more very heavy rain across new south wales as the low pressure swings eastwards we'll start to get some pretty gusty north-easterly winds these combining with high tides that will effectively stop the rivers from removing that flood water so the flooding is likely to get worse before it gets better in a number of communities so more extreme rainfall around there's a risk of some landslides as well but the rain should start to ease away by wednesday but the flood waters will take days to gradually drain away bbc weather there

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