A huge five-day RAINSTORM is about to strike Australia which gives drained firefighters hope that bushfires can be brought under control.
The east of Australia is expected to receive its most significant rainfall in months this week, which is bringing much-needed relief to the exhausted firefighters that are tackling the bushfire-ravaged communities.
As of today, New South Wales is expected to receive rain which will cover the Snowy Mountains, southwest of Sydney and along the south coast, which is predicted to continue until the weekend.
Sydney is forecast to receive its most significant downpour in the last several months, with predictions of 2-8mm on Thursday and 5-10mm on Friday.
The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) says it is difficult to forecast exactly how much rain will fall because showers can be inconsistent.
BoM weather forecaster Sarah Scully said: “The best-case scenario, with the ongoing showers and storms from Wednesday onwards, is that they can really impact and help to extinguish some of the fires.
“What’s difficult to say is the exact location where the heaviest totals are going to be accumulated.
“At least with this heavy rainfall the ground will be moister and it’ll be harder to ignite.”
On the south coast, Bega is expected to receive between 3mm and 10mm on Thursday, which is the date when most of the rain is expected to fall.
However, in Cooma which is just 100km inland, greater falls are expected. These rainfalls will range from 8mm to 25mm in the forecast.
If this @BOM_NSW rainfall forecast comes to fruition then this will be all of our Christmas, birthday, engagement, anniversary, wedding and graduation presents rolled into one. Fingers crossed. #NSWRFS #nswfires pic.twitter.com/R9VfD0bqu2
— NSW RFS (@NSWRFS) January 12, 2020
It has been warned by the NSW Rural Fire Service that there is no guarantee that these storms will extinguish the 105 fires that are burning across the state as of Monday night.
Officials claim that it is likely that the thunderstorms will result in falling trees and landslip.
Since New Year’s Eve, 1,200 homes have been destroyed by the fires in NSW this bushfire season.
This wet weather has arrived just after the NSW blazes have been brought under control since Sunday.
RFS has announced that firefighters have been able to contain the Gospers Mountain mega-blaze, which is northwest of Sydney. This has burnt over 512,000 hectares over the last two-and-a-half-months.
Hawkesbury RFS stated on Facebook: “Containment took longer than expected due to unfavourable weather conditions, however due to our hardworking crews, we have achieved that today.
“It is important to remember not to be complacent as there are still a few months of the bushfire season to go with some bushland that still has not been burnt.”
BoM meteorologist Gabrielle Woodhouse said although the rain is welcome at the fire grounds, it may bring further danger to fire-affected landscapes.
She said: “We are looking at a couple of days in a row of some showers and thunderstorms, some of which may produce significant accumulation over those couple of days.
“It will be quite welcome but there are some extra dangers and risks associated with it as the landscape is quite vulnerable with the fire damage.
“We’ve lost a lot of vegetations and there is the risk of landslips.”
Across NSW there 122 fires burning on Sunday night, but not were determined to be at an emergency level.
The Department of Defence said that they would be taking advantage of these favourable conditions over the next few days by creating a 70km-long, 1km-wide firebreak in the Snowy Mountains region.
On Sunday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison paid tribute to 19-year-old Courtney Partridge who died on November 29, which was due to an asthma attack that was a result of the smoke in Glen Innes in the New England region.
“The sheer sense of loss, pain, hurt, grief, frustration, fear, particularly well away from the fires where we’ve seen also that terrible loss of the young as a result of an asthma attack,” Mr Morrison said.
“This has I think, created an environment where people for the first time have wanted to see a more direct involvement of the federal government in responding to these natural disasters.”
The Catholic Diocese of Sydney also held a special service on Sunday for the bushfire victims and drought-affected communities at St Mary’s Cathedral.
Sydney Archbishop Anthony Fisher said many Australian priests had flocked to the south coast to help assist or serving as army reservists.
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