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Severe hailstorm hits Melbourne’s outer suburbs, Australia

severe-hailstorm-melbourne-australia-january-2020

Parts of Melbourne's outer suburbs were pelted with hailstones up to 5 cm (2 inches) in diameter on Sunday, January 19, 2020, after thunderstorms quickly moved across much of southern Victoria, bringing strong winds and heavy rain.

Hailstones almost the size of a golfball were reported in eastern suburb Glen Iris, while fire-hit catchments in north-eastern Victoria and East Gippsland were put under a flood watch.

The storm damaged cars, houses, ceilings, and brought traffic to a standstill. The severe weather came after firefighters were withdrawn from fire zones on Sunday, amid fears of flash flooding in fire-ravaged areas.

While storms have brought much-needed rain and humidity into areas affected by fire, strong winds are feared to knock down trees that might result in landslides and send debris onto roads.

The Bureau of Meteorology said 30 to 50 mm (1 to 2 inches) of rain are expected until Tuesday, January 21, with some areas experiencing up to 150 mm (6 inches). The warning came as 14 fires continued to rage throughout Victoria. According to authorities, as of Sunday, 396 homes and 614 outbuildings had been lost.

Featured image credit: @pjmacaulay/Twitter

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