Wild weather causes chaos for thousands of travellers at Sydney Airport as severe storm system brings a months worth of rain in just two hours
- Severe storm cell pounds Sydney on Monday evening
- Many flights in and out of Sydney aiport halted
- Commuters delayed across city by flooded roads
Sydney has been thrown into chaos on Monday evening as a violent storm grounds flights and causes major delays for traffic.
The weather office alerted Sydney airport of an incoming storm cell around 5.15pm before thunderstorms and heavy rain began to pound the city, halting flights.
The storm hit the city’s south an hour earlier – with Camden recording a month’s worth of rain in two hours – then began to head north, causing havoc for drivers out on Sydney roads.
The Bureau of Meteorology issued several updated ‘severe thunderstorm’ warnings during the afternoon and evening, saying the system was headed north-east and likely to bring flash flooding.
It later updated that warning to say areas north-west of the city, including Richmond, Windsor and Dural were also at risk of flash flooding.
‘Heavy to intense rain has already been observed with thunderstorms,’ the Bureau said. ‘Take care on the road and drive to conditions.’
Passengers at Sydney airport took to social media to report being told the airport was ‘closed due to storms’ around 5.20pm.
Sydney has been thrown into chaos on Monday evening as a violent storm grounds flights and causes major delays for traffic
Flights at Sydney airport were severely impacted by a violent storm that hit the city’s south and moved north from around 4.15pm on Monday
A Sydney airport spokesperson told Daily Mail Australia that while airport is not officially closed, some airlines have delayed flights.
‘Our best advice is to check in with your airline to see if your flight is affected,’ the spokesperson said.
It is understood individual airline captains make the call on whether to proceed – and many took a cautious approach with the city under siege from the storm.
Streets in Sydney’s west and south-west were quickly inundated as stormwater drains struggled to cope with the downpour, blowing out the journey home for commuters.
The heavy rain caused flooding across the city, including at Milperra where several vehicles were stranded on the M5
Flash flooding at Rosehill caused traffic chaos in both directions for drivers after 6pm.
Two of three lanes were closed in both directions of James Ruse Drive at Grand Parade/Hassall Street due to flooding and car breakdowns.
At Granville, Woodville Road was closed in both directions between Crescent Street and Wallace Street due to flooding.
As the storm moved north, roads went underwater at Artarmon.
Two out of four northbound lanes of the Gore Hill Freeway were closed due to flooding.
Meanwhile at least four cars were stranded on the M5 motorway off-ramp at Milperra, in western Sydney according to 9News.
The weather office said Camden Airport recorded 51mm of rain in just 30 minutes before 4.45pm and by 6pm had recorded over 70mm – equivalent to a month’s rain in under two hours.
Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued for several regional areas including the Blue Mountains and Hawkesbury, Hunter Valley, the Illawarra, Central Tablelands, NSW mid-north coast and Northern Rivers regions.