Wild summer storms imminent

BATTEN down the hatches – summer on the Coffs Coast looks like being incredibly wet and wild.

The SES said a combination of ominous weather events could bring more flooding to the region and now is the time to prepare for the worst.

“We’ve had advice from the Bureau of Meteorology there is up to a 75 per cent chance of greater-than-average rainfall in northern NSW and southeast Queensland from December 1 to the end of February,” said SES spokesman Phil Campbell.

“We’re advised there is also the chance of a higher-than-average number of tropical cyclones in the Coral Sea (off north Queensland). While cyclones are rare in northern NSW they sometimes do come down as far as Coffs Harbour.

“There is also Bureau advice we will have potentially a higher-than-average number of thunderstorms this season as well.”

Mr Campbell said forecasters were predicting our wettest summer for two decades.

“There are some things people can do to prepare for storms and floods and there’s no better time than now to do so,” he said.

“Before storms hit you should clean out gutters and downpipes and put away all loose items. Keep your roof in good repair and trim tree branches.”

Mr Campbell said the biggest killer in floods was people entering floodwaters.

“So don’t drive, ride, walk into or play in floodwaters,” he said.

SES volunteers stand ready to help and if you need them, contact the emergency hotline on 132 500.

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