“A very dangerous thunderstorm” is expected to hit Sydney this morning.
Tornadoes, very destructive winds, large hailstones and very heavy rainfall and flash flooding are all likely, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.
The storms are expected to affect Sydney City, Sydney Olympic Park, the Sydney Harbour Bridge and waters off Bondi Beach by 11:10 am and Hornsby, Ryde and Terrey Hills by 11:40 am.
Here is the image the BOM has provided with the warning.
A tornado warning has also been issued for Kurnell, with wind gust greater than 200 km/h reported at in the area at 10.30 am today.
The State Emergency Service advises that people should move cars under cover or away from trees, secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony and keep clear of fallen power lines, creeks and storm drains.
The update will be issued by 11:40 am.
For emergency help in floods and storms, ring the SES (NSW and ACT) on 132 500.
Here are some photos of the wild weather hitting the city.
— Sam Buckingham-Jones (@SamEBJones) December 16, 2015
Here’s the moment it hit Sydney Harbour. These photos were taken via the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority Live Stream between 11.10 and 11.20am.
You can see the storm clouds approaching.
As they invade the sky the city gets darker
When it hits it’s almost a black out with rain and wind.
It’s even too much to the camera, covered with rain drops.
The damage at Kurnell is also becoming apparent. This tweet from Engadine Royal Fire Brigade shows the effect of the destructive winds.
— Engadine RFB (@Engadine_RFB) December 16, 2015
— Fire & Rescue NSW (@FRNSW) December 16, 2015
There are also reports that the Sydney Desalination Plant, which is in Kurnell, is being evacuated after significant damage.
JUST IN: Sydney Desalination Plant, #Kurnell is being evacuated after significant damage. Structural integrity cannot be confirmed.
— SutherlandShireNews (@SShireNews) December 16, 2015
And the Huffington Post has photos of a flipped truck.
— HuffPost Australia (@HuffPostAU) December 16, 2015
Flights appear to be grounded at Sydney Airport, and incoming planes skirt the city, waiting for the storm to pass.
Virgin Australia is one of the many airlines experiencing delays.
Storms in Sydney are affecting flights to/from Sydney Airport today. Please check our Flight Status page here: https://t.co/LTeeHjcgRQ
— Virgin Australia (@VirginAustralia) December 16, 2015
Qantas also has delayed some flights until the storm clears up.
Gridlocked traffic in the direction of the departures terminal is so bad people are even abandoning their cars to walk to their flights.
Claire Milet told The Guardian that they almost missed take off until she showed the airline the photo below.
“Apparently there were 30 people on our flight alone who missed it. Disgraceful for an international airport,” she said.
— (Joyeux No)Elle Hunt (@mlle_elle) December 16, 2015
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