Sydney floods: More than 100 rescues made overnight as 50,000 face evacuation

ITV News Asia Correspondent Debi Edward reports on the tens of thousands of residents facing evacuation amid severe flooding in Australia

One hundred rescues were made overnight as Sydney faces its fourth flood emergency in 16 months.

Evacuation orders and warnings to prepare to abandon homes were given to 50,000 people - up from 32,000 on Monday - due to flooding in and around Australia’s largest city.

In February, eight people died after flash floods battered the country's east coast.Emergency response teams made 100 rescues overnight of people trapped in cars on flooded roads or in inundated homes in the Sydney area, State Emergency Service manager Ashley Sullivan said.

It comes as days of torrential rain have caused dams to overflow and waterways to break their banks.

A man paddles on a stand-up paddle board through a flooded street at Windsor on the outskirts of Sydney. Credit: AP

Parts of southern Sydney had been lashed by almost eight inches of rain in 24 hours, more than 17% of the city’s annual average, Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Jonathan How said.

Severe weather warnings of heavy rain remained in place across Sydney’s eastern suburbs on Tuesday. The warnings also extended north of Sydney along the coast and into the Hunter Valley.

The worst flooding was along the Hawkesbury-Nepean river system along Sydney’s northern and western fringes.

The New South Wales state government declared a disaster across 23 local government areas overnight, activating federal government financial assistance for flood victims.

New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet urged those in the state to continue being cautious.

He said: “This event is far from over. Please don’t be complacent, wherever you are. Please be careful when you’re driving on our roads. There is still substantial risk for flash flooding across our state."

Residents were assessing the damage on Tuesday. One local told reporters that the flooding was "unbelievable".

Residents of Lansvale, in southwest Sydney, were surprised by the speed at which their area became inundated and the growing frequency of such flooding.

“Well, it happened in 1986 and ’88, then it didn’t happen for 28 years and, so, 2016 and 2020 and now it’s happened four times this year,” a Lansvale local named Terry told Australian Broadcasting Corp. television of his home being flooded.

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