NSW, Queensland floods LIVE updates: Waters begin to recede in Lismore as BOM warns Sydney to ‘hunker down’ for more wild weather over weekend

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Key posts

  • Severe thunderstorm warning for Mid North Coast and Hunter
  • Sydney spared the worst, but major flooding still hit fringes
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Severe thunderstorm warning for Mid North Coast and Hunter

As of 5am on Friday, there was a severe thunderstorm warning for parts of the Mid North Coast and the Hunter, with residents warned that heavy rain could lead to flash flooding.

“An east coast low lies off the Mid North Coast and is pushing a near stationary area of rain onto the coast, along with some isolated embedded thunderstorms,” the warning said.

Clean up continues downtown Lismore.Credit:Elise Derwin

The bureau cancelled its severe weather warning for much of the NSW including Sydney, Northern Rivers, Central Tablelands, Snowy Mountains and the Lower Western.

“A few thunderstorms remain possible over the NSW central coast and adjacent inland, with a small risk of more localised heavy rainfall – severe thunderstorm warnings will be issued if this eventuates,” the bureau said.

“A separate Severe Weather Warning remains current for damaging surf south of Forster.”

For those who may be returning to their homes after being evacuated, the SES has issued a guide.

Today’s Sydney Morning Herald front page

Here’s today’s front page of The Sydney Morning Herald. Read our top story here.

Sydney spared the worst, but major flooding still hit fringes

While Sydney was spared the worst of the flooding on Thursday, major flooding still occurred on the city’s fringe, where the water peaked at 12.2 metres at Windsor last night as it headed downstream toward Wisemans Ferry.

The expected spillover from Warragamba Dam was also revised down from 600 gigalitres to 300 or 350.

“We are not going to see a worsening of the situation which was originally feared … thanks to the weather tracking further north than the bureau expected,” said State Emergency Service (SES) spokesman Phil Campbell.

Along the Georges River in the south-west, locals said floodwaters peaked at about midnight and were receding by Thursday afternoon. The SES had “a much more reasonable day” with 1200 calls between 8am and 5pm and 13 flood rescues, compared to hundreds on Wednesday.

The water was likely to hang around western Sydney for some time, and it was unlikely evacuated residents would be cleared to return before the weekend, Mr Campbell said.

Read the full report here. 

Good morning

Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the disastrous floods that in recent days have inundated and devastated communities in NSW and Queensland.

Sydney dodged a bullet yesterday as the much-feared “rain bomb” spared the city and dumped its heaviest falls to the north and south. Floodwaters in the nation’s biggest city remained below the worst-case scenario that authorities feared.

Chipping Norton resident Bernie King inspecting the flooding along Newbridge Road on Thursday. Credit:Louise Kennerley

But the crisis is still unfolding for some communities in the state’s north, even as much of the floodwater has receded to reveal the full extent of the damage.

We’ll bring you the latest information as it comes in throughout the day.

You can read Thursday’s liveblog here.

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