Evacuation orders, traffic chaos as deadly floods sweep through Sydney

Thousands of people in New South Wales have been ordered to leave their homes as rising waters have wreaked havoc.

An east coast low has brought heavy rainfall to Greater Sydney and surrounding areas, and authorities have warned that while the rain will ease as the week progresses, swollen rivers will continue to rise.

Police pulled two bodies from floodwaters in Wentworthville, a western suburb of the city, on Tuesday morning and later in the day several parts of the northern beaches were inundated.

That’s how the day went.

Live updates

The important eventPin

Latest NSW rains and floods

Live updates have ended on this blog, here’s what you need to know:

Prime Minister’s press conference live

By Riley Stuart

It’s all about me

It was a wet and wild ride today – but I have to sign. I’ll pin a message to the top of this feed where you can get the latest information.

Till we Meet Again.

By Riley Stuart

Flooded Roseville Bridge

So it’s not the Harbor Bridge, but this shot of the Roseville Bridge across Middle Harbor made the rounds today. Pretty amazing.

Facebook: NSW Unit SES Warringah/Pittwater

By Riley Stuart

Here comes the rain again

Provided: Bureau of Meteorology

By Riley Stuart

Greater Sydney Dam levels

In case you were wondering:

  • Warragamba Dam: 100%
  • Woronora Dam: 100%
  • Avon Dam: 100%
  • Cataract Dam: 100%
  • Cordeaux dam: 100%
  • Nepean Dam: 100%
  • Prospect Dam: 97.4%
  • Wingecarribee Reservoir: 100%
  • Fitzroy Falls Reservoir: 100%
  • Tallowa Dam: 100%
  • Blue Mountains Dams: 99.9%

By Riley Stuart

Discover this story

Here’s a bit more background on what happened in Manly this afternoon.

By Riley Stuart

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ICYMI: This was my talented colleague Mark Reddie’s story of today’s sad development that two bodies had been pulled from the water in western Sydney.

By Riley Stuart

The Manly flood this afternoon

By Riley Stuart

Well done commentators 👏👏

Thanks to everyone who chimed in, here are a few of my favorites.

Riley, I think Heath entrusted the rain to you!

-Vanessa from Adelaide

I hear that it is the rain which reigns!


It’s the reign of sin in the comments this afternoon.


And here’s one from the person who started it all by rightly pointing out the typo!

For Cam from Clifton Hill.

Thanks, I think. As always, you see the errors after clicking “Post a comment”.


Thanks for playing everyone – now back to the floods.

By Riley Stuart

Singapore helicopters aid flood recovery

Supplied: MINDEF Singapore

The Singapore Air Force has deployed two Chinook helicopters to assist with flood recovery efforts in Queensland and New South Wales.

Both helicopters are usually based at a Queensland facility and are used to transport emergency personnel and supplies.

Singapore is also sending a relief package containing things like tents, blankets, cooked food, water and medical supplies that were due to leave the city-state today.

By Riley Stuart

The NSW State Emergency Service (SES) has issued flood evacuation orders for the entire suburb of McGraths Hill and Mulgrave in Sydney’s northwest.

It says once flood waters reach 13.5m at nearby Windsor, the area will be isolated.

It tells people to evacuate by 8:30 p.m. and warns if they don’t they can get trapped without power or water, and it can be too dangerous to carry out rescues.

By Riley Stuart

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The home of ABC’s Aymen Baghdadi in Sydney’s south-west was inundated by floodwaters last night. He was actually covering the ER earlier.

By Riley Stuart

Continue the comments

Cam from Clifton Hill, this is the most brilliantly witty commentary I’ve seen in five years. I may only fear you and I’ll get it – if someone else does, sing along!

A hint: it concerns another post of the past hour. 🤔

Let him who is without sin cast the first stone.

-Clifton Hill Camera

By Riley Stuart

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That was the scene at Mackellar Girls Campus (a school in Manly Vale on Sydney’s northern beaches) this afternoon.

By Riley Stuart

Current BOM Warnings

This is what you need to know about the coming night.

The BOM says: “An east coast low continues to slowly deepen off the Hunter Coast and is expected to track south-southeastward overnight and Wednesday, taking it gradually further offshore.”

Heavy rain could cause flash flooding in these areas:

  • sydney
  • Illawarra
  • Northern parts of the south coast

Between 5 p.m. and 11 p.m., these areas could receive between 70 and 100 mm of rain.

Provided: Bureau of Meteorology

Meanwhile, destructive winds could be prevalent in these areas:

  • sydney
  • Northern parts of the south coast
  • Illawarra
  • Eastern parts of the Southern Tableands

By Riley Stuart

BOM rainfall totals

So how wet was it today?

Here are some of the main observations from the office:

  • 102mm in three hours at 2:30 p.m. at Mona Vale Golf Club
  • 124mm in six hours at 11 a.m. in Forestville
  • 119 mm in six hours at 10 a.m. in Allambie
  • 51 mm in one hour at 1:45 p.m. in Mosman

There was a wind gust of 94 km/h at Kiama recorded at 2:18 p.m. and one at 91 km/h at Montague Island at 11:56 a.m.

By Riley Stuart

Let my reign begin. 👑

To Heath Parkes-Hupton. When you sin, you pass the reins to the next person. Reins, as in (usually) controlling a horse.
Reign means the period during which a monarch sits on the throne, but has nothing to do with handing over control. At least, not in this context, anyway.


By Riley Stuart

It’s good to be here

Well, it’s good to be anywhere safe and dry in New South Wales this month.

I will share with you the evolution of the floods and weather conditions this evening.

Here’s one to kick things off: my wardrobe started leaking today…it looks like the ceiling in our apartment in Sydney has finally succumbed after over 130mm of rain in the past few 24 hours.

These hands are definitely better at sending e-mail than at sealing the roof, so sorting will be tomorrow’s problem!

I’m certainly not complaining: so many people have lost so much on Australia’s east coast over the past two weeks.

Fortunately, in NSW at least, the weather is starting to improve from tomorrow.

More on that later. For now: buckle up.

By Heath Parkes-Hupton

Heath goes offline

That’s all from me today.

I’m handing the reins over to Riley Stuart, who’ll let you know tonight.

Thanks for reading – and stay safe!

Job , update