Communities across NSW are being urged to prepare for the upcoming storm season, with the Bureau of Meteorology forecasting a typical season of hailstorms, heavy rain and flash flooding.
The NSW State Emergency Service has responded to 5600 storm damage jobs in the past three months and more than 34,000 in the past year.
SES Acting Commissioner Kyle Stewart on Tuesday said severe weather could hit at any time during the summer months, while NSW Emergency Services Minister David Elliott warned NSW residents to be prepared.
He also reminded residents to never drive through flood waters.
“You wouldn’t walk into a bushfire, so why would you drive your car into floodwaters?” Mr Elliott told reporters in Wollongong.
“I’m confident we have a very well-resourced emergency services fraternity, I’m confident they’re well trained. What I’m not confident about is the community taking and mitigating their own risk.”
He reiterated that storms would become more frequent in the coming months, and residents should stay across weather forecasts.
SES volunteers later conducted a simulation rescue of a fallen tree on a car.
“Even an average storm season can wreak havoc, like what we saw in the Sydney hailstorms last December,” Mr Stewart said.
Despite predictions of a typical NSW storm season, BOM has declared spring will be warmer and drier than usual across most of Australia.