Hail explodes over Sydney peppering west with huge stones smashing cars and tearing down trees


A freak storm has ripped a roof off a shopping centre, brought trees down on top of cars and smashed car windscreens across western Sydney.

Huge hail stones – some bigger than golf balls – rained down across west of the city, with Campbelltown and Miranda among the suburbs worst affected.

Meanwhile, a driver filmed the moment the roof was torn off Bringelly Village Shopping Centre in Sydney’s south-west. 

In Miranda, two drivers were trapped in their cars after a tree fell on top of their vehicles. 

One Sydney resident shared a picture of her trampoline which had been lifted into the air by strong winds.

Others shared details about the damage their properties had received in the storm.

‘My Subaru copped hail damage yesterday, but not to this extent. Dents all over the body, including the roof. Luckily no broken windows. Still owe $12k on the car,’ one shattered resident wrote. 

‘We can’t cop a break, can we? Devastation by fires then brief rejoicing in the rain, before it became floods and bird-killing hail,’ another added.

Dozens of birds were left injured after the freak thunderstorm, with some falling out of the sky. 

Kindhearted Samaritans rescued the birds, wrapping them in towels before taking them to see a vet.

‘This poor crow has taken a hail stone to the head during the storm in Canberra by the looks of it. Parliament House staff are looking after him,’ reporter Finbar O’Mallon shared on Twitter.

One person took a photo of their Hills Hoist clothesline, an Australian invention, withstanding the might of the thunderstorm.

Residents are always cautioned about the risks of falling trees in storm and one resident shared a scary image of a tree branch hanging onto a power line in a quiet suburban street.  

The threat of further thunderstorm activity has eased as of 6.20pm however the Bureau of Meteorology has warned there is a slight chance of redevelopment

Meanwhile Canberra and inland New South Wales were battered by another violent thunderstorms on Monday which saw people struck by lightning and property damaged by giant hailstones. 

Two people were struck by lightning in the Blue Mountains and another two injured in Canberra as enormous thunderstorms tear through the east coast of Australia. 

A 16-year-old boy suffered burns to his torso, arms and legs when he was struck near Katoomba, in NSW, at 2pm on Monday. A 24-year-old man was also treated by paramedics after lightning and hail hit the region.

Both patients were taken to Nepean Hospital for treatment. 

Meanwhile at least two people have been treated for minor injuries in Canberra after a 15 minute hail storm wrecked cars, buildings and left people running for cover. 

The storm is now heading to large swathes of NSW, Victoria and southeast Queensland, according to forecasters. 

Pictures show the front gardens of Parliament House in the Australian Capital Territory covered in golf ball-sized pieces of hail, while mountains of ice piled up against doorways and footpaths.

Car windows were shattered in the storm and the ferocity of the downpour ripped branches from trees throughout the state.

Footage also caught the moment tradies were forced to run for cover from the battering, while locals in t-shirts and shorts took the opportunity to ‘surf’ on the slippery ground.  

Nearby employees said the hail ‘sounded like gunfire’. 

The ACT Emergency Services Agency responded to more than 1,200 calls for assistance during and immediately after the storm. 

Power was also cut in the state after the supercell wrecked power poles, but it has since been restored to about 1,000 homes. 

At least 170 customers are still without power. 

Canberra tour guide Tim the Yowie Man tweeted a picture of the National Sound and Film Archive’s roof being punctured ‘like bullets’.

Other buildings in the area were also affected. Matthew Cossey said on Twitter his office building was pelted with hail the size of cricket balls.

‘Thick glass roof of our building was just smashed in by hail stones,’ he wrote.

Meteorologists now predict the supercell storm will drench much of drought-ravaged NSW, southeast Queensland and Victoria by late-afternoon. 

A severe thunderstorm warning has been issued for the southwest slopes of NSW and nearby regions. 

Brisbane could see up to 30mm of rain on Monday afternoon according to BoM – which also forecasts heatwave conditions across the state for much of the week. 

Weatherzone meteorologist Scott Morris on Monday told Daily Mail Australia Sydneysiders could expect the storm to hit by late afternoon.  

‘We should be expecting severe thunderstorms more south east of NSW this afternoon and late into this evening,’ he said.

‘They should be in Sydney very soon. They will be moving on to the city between 3-4pm. With the system we could see destructive winds, possibly in excess of 100km/h.’ 

Mr Morris said residents should take extra precautions by moving valuables to a safe space to avoid any significant damage which hail could cause. 

The NSW State Emergency Service warns the storms are expected to cause ‘havoc’ for peak hour commuters.

Emergency Services minister David Elliott asked drivers to take it easy on the state’s roads.

‘Make sure you make safe decisions and take the time to plan your trip, check for road closures and traffic conditions before you get on the road,’ Mr Elliott said in a statement on Monday.

‘Run-off from rainfall in fire affected areas may behave differently and be more rapid resulting in flash flooding which may also contain debris such as ash, soil, trees and rocks,’ continued Mr Elliott.

SES assistant commissioner Paul Bailey urged the public to prepare for wet weather.

‘I’m urging people to ask themselves the questions – what would you do with your pets, your car or loose outdoor furniture if a storm was to hit?’, Mr Bailey said in a statement.

The Bureau of Meteorology on Monday morning said severe thunderstorms were likely to form from north of Newcastle to the NSW-Victoria border on the coast.

A severe thunderstorm warning was also issued for the southwest slopes, as well as parts of the southern tablelands, central-west slopes and plains, Riverina, lower western and Snowy Mountains regions.

Areas likely to be hit by heavy storms included Wagga Wagga, Albury, West Wyalong, Griffith, Narrandera and bushfire-affected Tumbarumba.

BoM said the low-pressure system prompting the thunderstorm warning would move east to the Tasman Sea by Monday night.

Winds will shift and come from the north and west mid-week, bringing drier and warmer air – and higher fire danger – on Wednesday and Thursday. 

Firefighters are working to slow the spread of fire and build containment lines while the rain lasts, with increased fire danger expected later this week.

Meanwhile in Victoria, the town of Broadford recorded 50mm of rainfall in 45 minutes overnight.

Bushfire-ravaged parts of Victoria now face the possibility of flash flooding as the state prepares for its wettest two-day period in months.

Heavy rain, damaging winds and large hail are possible in eastern parts of the state including East Gippsland where fires continue to burn.

A severe weather warning was put in place on Sunday at 6pm for heavy rainfall expected to develop across the state on Monday.

‘Widespread falls of 10-30mm are forecast for the warning area, with isolated falls of 60-80mm associated with thunderstorm activity’, the warning read.

Across other parts of the state, falls of 20-50mm were forecast with peak rain of 100mm. 

Much of the rainfall is expected to pour in periods of 4 to 6 hours.

‘We’re going to see some potential flash flooding and severe thunderstorms over the next couple of days, including some damaged fire areas,’ Emergency Services Minister Lisa Neville warned.

‘Victoria is about to see its wettest two-day period in many, many months,’ Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Dean Narramore added.

While rain was welcome in the state, it did come with dangers.

‘Unfortunately coming in this massive amount in one go, quickly does cause some risk… both in how you capture most of that… and also debris run-off and the potential for fallen trees,’ the emergency services minister said. 

Further storms are expected for southeast Queensland after as much as 350mm of rain fell in some areas throughout the weekend. 

Heavy falls caused flash flooding on the weekend, which shut down major roads and caused delays.

Little Nerang Dam in the Gold Coast Hinterland, is near capacity after the downpour.

Seqwater has recorded the dam at 96 per cent full after the weekend rain, up from 72.5 per cent on Friday. 


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