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Flash Flooding Leads To Emergency Rescues, Evacuations In Sydney

Australia’s largest city experienced flash flooding due to heavy rain on Saturday, leading to evacuation directives for multiple low-lying areas.

 Australia’s largest city, Sydney, experienced flash flooding due to heavy rain on Saturday, leading to rescues and evacuation directives for multiple low-lying areas.

Emergency services reported conducting 13 rescues and receiving 297 assistance requests from Sydney residents, the capital of New South Wales, within the 24 hours leading up to 5 a.m. local time, due to flooding caused by the intense rainfall.

The New South Wales State Emergency Service (SES), announced on Saturday morning that ten emergency evacuation orders were issued for suburbs in the city’s northwest.

The country’s weather service warned that severe flooding could happen later on Saturday in the northwest part of Sydney, a city with around 5 million residents.

Sydney’s Hawkesbury-Nepean valley, a floodplain susceptible to significant flooding, receives water from five tributaries and has constrictions that slow water flow to the ocean, causing water to accumulate during heavy rains.

SES Acting Assistant Commissioner, Dallas Burnes, told the Australian Broadcasting Corp that there was “still a lot of water moving around” and advised affected residents to be ready to evacuate their homes.

New South Wales Emergency Services, Minister Jihad Dib, mentioned that the rain had fallen on already saturated catchments, leading to “a much more profound effect.”

Dib said, “Our dams are full, our waterways are overflowing, and the ground is completely saturated,” noting that some roads and bridges had been impacted.

This current emergency follows the rescue of over 150 people from floodwaters in eastern Australia in April.

According to the federal government’s Australian Climate Service agency, floods rank as the second-deadliest natural disaster in Australia after heatwaves, responsible for approximately 20% of natural disaster death between 1900 and 2022.

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