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Storms lash south-east Queensland as wet weather moves south to NSW

Thunderstorms drenched large parts of Queensland on Tuesday, leaving thousands without power, while heavy rains made their way to Sydney on Wednesday morning.

Nearly 8,000 homes in Queensland’s south-east were temporarily left without power after the damaging winds and rain battered power lines.

The weather system formed over the Darling Downs on Tuesday afternoon, moving towards the coast and hitting Brisbane around 7pm. The powerful downfall deposited more than 60mm of rain in an hour in the Logan suburb of Priestdale.

Bureau of Meteorology, Queensland (@BOM_Qld)

A line of storms has developed southwest of Brisbane, and moving to the northeast. A more isolated storm lies near Jimna. These storms likely contain gusty winds and hail, and will produce a short burst of heavy rainfall. Latest warnings here: #SEQStorm

In other areas of the state the thunderstorm brought 3cm of hail and powerful winds – the highest recorded gusts reaching 96km/h near the central Queensland town of Longreach just before 4pm.

Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Rosa Hoff said on Wednesday although the storm had yet to dissipate it was unlikely to bring the same levels of rain on Wednesday.

KarmelianMedia (@KarmelianMedia)

Brisbane Storm | 23/02/21
Looking SW from southside Brisbane #brisbane #bnestorm #bne #storm #stormhour #weather #weatherphotography #hyperlapse #thisisqueensland #queensland #seeaustralia #summer #cloudporn #clouds #karmelianmedia #abcmyphoto

“That trough, which brought the action, has started to retreat back toward the west so it’s moved away from the coast. The chance for Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast today are generally just some showers around, maybe the chance of a storm but we’re not expecting any severe activity today,” she said.

A sweltering heatwave hit the state in recent days with temperatures reaching 40.5C in Longreach, and many other towns in the high 30s.

Hoff said although the storms provided some relief, it was not enough to break the heat for the majority of the state, and a combination of other factors were responsible for a mild easing of temperatures in the south-east, with the mercury expected to stay in the low 30s for the remainder of the week.

The same weather system began to impact northern NSW on Wednesday as the low-pressure trough moved below the border.

Bureau of Meteorology, New South Wales (@BOM_NSW)

Severe thunderstorm warning updated. There have been multiple reports of heavy rain in NE NSW. Please be aware and take appropriate action. There may dangerous driving conditions and a risk of flash flooding.

“As we start to see the trough migrate back towards the west those weather systems won’t be connected any more,” Hoff said.

Sydney and Wollongong also experienced heavy rains on Wednesday morning. Road safety alerts advised those driving through the downpour in Sydney’s east to take care.

Bureau of Meteorology, New South Wales (@BOM_NSW)

Heavy showers around #Sydney and #Wollongong at the moment. Take care on the roads for the morning commute.

“Slippery and flooded roads will make driving conditions dangerous during Wednesday in the eastern suburbs,” the alert read. “Motorists are advised to take extreme care.”

BoM meteorologist Helen Kirkup said: “In Sydney at three o’clock in the morning, it really started with some intense rainfall that led into the peak hour part of the day and caused a few problems."

“Now it has mostly stopped, you can even see blue sky depending on where you look.”

The city was expected to receive between 4mm and 15mm of rain on Wednesday.

Kirkup said some showers were likely to continue on and off throughout the day, with a higher chance of thunderstorms for the east of the state and Sydney on Thursday.

“There’s a chance [the weather system] is going to get quite unstable,” she said.

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