Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology
Victoria Regional Office
TOP PRIORITY FOR IMMEDIATE BROADCAST
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
for DAMAGING WIND, HEAVY RAINFALL and LARGE HAILSTONES
For people in the Central, Northern Country, North Central, North East, West and South Gippsland and parts of the Mallee, South West and Wimmera Forecast Districts.
Issued at 1:21 am Sunday, 1 May 2016.
Severe thunderstorms are likely to produce damaging winds and heavy rainfall that may lead to flash flooding in the warning area over the next several hours, and large hailstones are possible. Locations which may be affected include Ballarat, Bendigo, Shepparton, Seymour, Maryborough, Geelong, Melbourne, Wodonga, Wangaratta and Traralgon.
The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
* Keep clear of fallen power lines.
* Secure any loose objects in the vicinity of your home.
* Keep away from creeks and drains.
* Do not drive vehicles through flooded areas.
* Be aware that in fire affected areas, rainfall run-off into waterways may contain debris such as ash, soil, trees and rocks.
* Be alert that in areas recently affected by fires, heavy rainfall increases the potential for landslides and debris across roads.
* Stay indoors if possible.
* Avoid using the phone during the storm.
* If you are outside, avoid sheltering under trees
* Listen to the radio for storm updates
* Switch off your computer and electrical appliances
The next warning is due to be issued by 4:25 am.
If severe thunderstorms develop in the Melbourne Area, a more detailed Severe Thunderstorm Warning will be issued to people in this area.
Warnings are also available through TV and Radio broadcasts, the Bureau's website at www.bom.gov.au or call 1300 659 217. The Bureau and State Emergency Service would appreciate warnings being broadcast regularly.