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TRAVEL & LEISURE

Sydneysiders Are Being Urged to Remain Close to Home During This Weekend's Wet Weather

"Normally we’re telling people to travel around New South Wales, but this weekend is an exception," said Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
By Sarah Ward
March 19, 2021
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By Sarah Ward
March 19, 2021
  shares

In news that won't come as a surprise to anyone in Sydney, it's currently wet. And, as the Bureau of Meteorology has been warning this week, this current patch of rainy weather isn't going anywhere over the weekend. This isn't just a few drops from the sky, though, with huge and heavy downpours forecast. Accordingly, Premier Gladys Berejiklian is asking Sydneysiders to reconsider their plans for the next few days, especially if hitting the road was on your agenda.

Speaking at a press conference today, Friday, March 19, to announce the rollout of New South Wales' $25 Dine & Discover vouchers statewide — something that is 100-percent designed to get everyone out of the house — the Premier advised that folks should be staying indoors this weekend. "Please know that this weekend is going to be quite severe in terms of weather conditions. Please follow the warnings, please stay home where you can — so use your vouchers next week when the weather is better," she said.

"Normally we're telling people to travel around New South Wales, but this weekend is an exception," the Premier continued, nothing that "there have been literally hundreds of callouts overnight". "If you did have plans to travel on the roads, please reconsider. We just want everybody to stay around and close to their home and to be safe," she said.

The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast up to 50 millimetres of rain in Sydney today, getting particularly heavy this evening, while between 60–120 millimetres is expected tomorrow, Saturday, March 20. Yes, that's a lot of rain, thanks to wet conditions further north now moving south. On Sunday, up to 20 millimetres of rain is predicted, with Monday possibly experiencing up to 25 millimetres and Tuesday receiving up to 35 millimetres. Come Wednesday and Thursday, the wet weather should reduce to just a shower or two, with up to ten millimetres and eight millimetres expected.

As well the strong likelihood of all of that water streaming from above, there's also a chance of thunderstorms both today and on Saturday. And, it's expected to be windy too. Strong southeasterly winds are predicted to hit 20–30 kilometres per hour today, then get up 25–40 kilometres per hour in the same direction tomorrow, before turning easterly and hitting up to 30–45 kilometres per hour.

Those winds are forecast to hover between 20–35 kilometres per hour on Sunday as well, and between 15–25 kilometres per hour on Monday — when they'll turn northeasterly. They'll then hang about and retain the same range of speeds through until at least Thursday.

BOM has issued a heap of warnings, unsurprisingly, including a strong wind warning for the Coffs coast, Hunter coast and Sydney coast for today, and a gale warning for the Macquarie coast, Hunter coast and Sydney coast for tomorrow. It has also put the mid-north coast, Hunter and parts of Sydney on flood watch, including the city's north and south.

At a press conference on Thursday, March 18, BOM also advised that there is a road weather alert for Sydney, spanning all suburbs — so if you do have to drive, you're advised to take extreme care. And, another press conference today, Friday, March 19, it also warned Sydneysiders to "be mindful about reconsidering their plans and potential changes to driving conditions". And, it advised that "the rainfall we have seen over the past few days, really what we'll see tomorrow will be substantially heavier and potentially more dangerous".

The conditions are being caused by a high-pressure system in the Tasman Sea, which is creating a coastal trough and bringing heavy rain to Sydney, as well as to the Hunter Valley and northern NSW from Friday and into Saturday. So, that's why heavy rainfall, strong and gusty winds, large waves and a chance of thunderstorms are all forecast for the NSW coast across the weekend.

If you do need to head out, don't forget to pack your umbrellas and raincoats — and keep an eye on the warnings. As usual with potential flooding, the state's State Emergency Service recommends you don't walk, drive or ride your bike through flood water.

As the weather conditions continue to develop, stay up to date with the latest forecast and weather warnings via the Bureau of Meteorology.

Published on March 19, 2021 by Sarah Ward

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