24.9°C 03:00 pm

It's not over yet

Wednesday, 12th January, 2011

Photos by Bruce Green taken of a creek on the Adelaide road, 10 kilometres from Broken Hill on Monday evening Photos by Bruce Green taken of a creek on the Adelaide road, 10 kilometres from Broken Hill on Monday evening

More rain forecast this week

The first rainfall of the year could also be the greatest, with the city set to receive more than half its annual rainfall in the next few days.

More than 12mm fell on the city late into Monday, and continued it right through yesterday.

By 4:20pm yesterday a total of 51mm had fallen, according to readings by the city's official weather reader, Phil Mew.

The rain, which is the first drop in almost one month, shows no signs of letting up, with Weatherzone forecasting an 80 per cent chance of between 40mm and 80mm of rain tomorrow.

Close to 150mm is forecast to fall across parts of Far West NSW in the coming days. The drenching has not been continual, according to Mr Mew, but "basically off and on."

"It's going to be here until this Friday," he said. Mr Mew said the rain has brought relief after temperatures of above 35 degrees for most of January.

"It will cause the temperature to drop lower than what we'd normally get this time of the year."

With heavy rains forecast, streets such as Morish and Mercury could be inundated. 

"I wouldn't be surprised if they get some flash flooding if we have a very heavy thunderstorm," Mr Mew said.

Stephens Creek was yesterday one foot from overflowing, and Silverton was cut off and had whole trees being washed down flooded creeks.

Silverton property owner, Helen Murray, said from 5pm Monday until yesterday afternoon, 96mm had fallen. "Umberumberka Creek is running a breaker, she's chock-a-block full," Mrs Murray said.

She said the road to Silverton from the city was closed and that part it was breaking apart.

Four visitors to the township earlier in the week are now stranded and staying with Silverton Hotel owners Peter and Patsy Price until the water recedes.

Mrs Murray said locals were sandbagging some houses and businesses and that her house at one stage was turned into an island.

"There is a lot of debris and whole trees being washed down creeks.

"The tree roots are getting undermined from all the rain in the last year. "We had water on both sides of us," she said.

Mrs Murray said she couldn't help thinking of Queenslanders when she looked at all the water yesterday.

"We've got nothing to complain about. All we're dealing with is nuisance size. Big deal. We can deal with it."

Broken Hill SES's Darren Larkin said his team was bracing for few more busy days.

Mr Larkin said the SES had completed 21 callouts ranging from leaking roofs and general flooding and that they had six more to go as of 3pm yesterday.

"We've been going since about 8am this morning," he said. "The ABC building got plenty of water through it." He said Silverton was "pretty right now".

The SES also urged people not to drive through flooded roads or causeways. Mr Larkin said people were welcome to collect empty sandbags from the SES if their homes were in any danger.

"You get a lot of people coming in to get sandbags which is good," he said. One of those worried locals was Wolfram Street resident Kevin Hall.

"The last time we had a big rain we had 20 millimetres at the back door," Mr Hall said.

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