Thousands Evacuated In Sydney To Escape ‘One-In-100-Year Floods’

Thousands Evacuated In Sydney To Escape ‘One-In-100-Year Floods’

Thousands Evacuated In Sydney To Escape ‘One-In-100-Year Floods’ .image: NSW emegency services Twitter

Thousands Evacuated In Sydney To Escape ‘One-In-100-Year Floods’.

Thousands of people in the North-West of Sydney were ordered to evacuate their homes late last night after continuous torrential rain saw water levels rise to dangerous heights. Gladys Berejiklian, the premier of NSW (New South Wales) called the flooding a “one-in-100-year event”.

“While we don’t think things will worsen on the mid-North Coast, definitely conditions will continue,” she told a news conference. Another 4,000 people may be asked to leave their homes in the coming days, she added.

Heavy rains continued to batter Australia’s east coast, triggering floods that caused widespread destruction throughout the region. Authorities issued flooding risk and evacuation warnings in about 12 areas in the state of New South Wales (NSW), of which Sydney is the capital, and warned of a potentially “life-threatening” situation in the region.

The assistant commissioner at NSW’s State Emergency Services, Dean Storey, said people living in evacuation zones “must leave immediately”.

“This is a very serious situation,” he said. “All communities need to be aware of their risk, and plan and prepare accordingly.” The orders came as the Warragamba Dam, which provides much of the drinking water for Sydney, spilled over on Saturday afternoon, causing water levels to rise along the Nepean and Hawkesbury rivers.

Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison lamented over the “absolutely heart-breaking scenes” on Saturday and offered government troops to help with the emergency effort.

The extreme weather has badly affected Australia’s COVID-19 vaccine deliveries to Sydney and throughout the state, while also disrupting the country’s plans to deliver the first vaccine doses to almost six million people during the next few weeks.

Evacuation centres were established at Richmond and Bellingen, adding to several others opened in the mid-north coast and Hunter regions. The heavy rain is expected to keep falling until Wednesday morning and people across the state are on high alert for rising floodwaters.

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Tony Winterburn

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