LIVES could be lost when storms of an “absolute massive scale” lash Victoria from Friday morning, with freak winds, torrential rain and lots of lightning, the bureau has warned.
WHAT WE KNOW SO FAR:
- All parts of Victoria has been issued with a severe weather warning.
- There will be thunderstorms in every district across the weekend.
- At least 300mm of rain will fall across the state between Friday and Sunday.
- Storms will begin in western Victoria on Friday morning.
- Storms will reach Melbourne Friday midday.
- The worst of Melbourne’s rainfall will take place on Friday evening and Saturday morning.
- WORST HIT: North East Victoria
- WORST IMPACT (by people): Melbourne
More than 300mm of rain will fall across all parts of the state, starting in western Victoria and arriving in Melbourne by midday Friday.
A severe weather warning has been issued for all of Victoria as the bureau prepares for what could be the state’s most significant rain event in more than 20 years.
The city will be lashed with more than 100 millimetres of rain – almost double its December average rainfall – over Friday and Saturday alone with thunderstorms and hail likely to accompany the downpour.
The heaviest rainfall for Melbourne is set to come on Friday night with more than 10 millimetres an hour expected.
“Half the inhabitants of Melbourne have probably never seen something like this,” Mr Williams said.
“This is a vast, intense, high impact event for this state.”
State Emergency Service deputy chief officer Tim Wiebush said Victorians should prepare for the potential for flash flooding and riverine flooding between Friday and Sunday.
“SES volunteers are on high alert with sandbagging collection points starting to be set up at various points across the state,” he said.
Victorians were warned not to go camping this weekend and were reminded that 15 centimetres of water on the road was all it took for a car to lose traction and float.
Major flooding expected
After a scorching end to spring, Melbourne is set to get possibly an entire summer’s worth of rain in the season’s first three days.
On a scale of one to 10 “it’s going to be pretty close to a 10”
“If you wake up [on Friday] and think it isn’t going to happen you’ll just have to wait a while. They didn’t think the Titanic would sink either but it did.”
Mr Williams said the biggest risk for Melbourne would be extensive flooding, which can occur with more than 100 millimetres of rain. He said the city could receive that amount on both Friday and Saturday nights.
“We’re going to have major flooding problems around the state, probably many roads cut. I suspect it will be impacted as badly as most of us have ever seen,” he said.