24 Apr 2015

The Big Storm

Here in NSW we have just experienced a big storm- on the Central Coast it has been described as the storm of the century.It started on Monday morning and by the evening the wind was howling and the rain was lashing down but it then got progressively worse through Tuesday and into the night.It was very frightening.As the house has a steel roof and is clad in steel sheeting heavy rain driving sideways into it sounds like gravel being thrown at it at a very high velocity.The noise was horrific.I feared that the next blast of wind would rip off the roof or bring a gumtree down.Our cats were terrified.
The damage over the region has been enormous.Roofs blown off houses, trees down everywhere with many falling onto houses and cars.Houses swept away in floods.
In Terrigal most boats were cleared from the local harbour,the Haven,in advance but one large boat was left and it ended up on the beach 3kms away badly damaged.A large branch fell on my roof and many fell on my garden doing serious damage.It's frustrating to spend 6 years growing a beautiful tree and then have it smashed in seconds by a giant gumtree branch.There is still a big branch balanced on the roof now.
As well as the flooding -over 200mm of rain in 24 hours on the Central Coast- the biggest disruption has been to electric power supply.Over 250,000 homes and businesses lost power.We lost ours from Tuesday midday until late this afternoon-Friday.It was not a good experience.Food in fridges ruined.No hot water.Cooking by the light of little LED torches.And the mobile phone networks were all down as well for 3 days.
I went out Tuesday morning to try and get some photos but I literally could not stand in the wind and sand was blasting off the beaches-not good for my camera or me.The roads were very dangerous with big branches falling down,garbage bins and garden furniture flying around  and live power lines lying on the road so I headed home very quickly.After that it was more about worrying about the storm and whether a big branch would hit our roof or whether the windows would get blown in-a very distinct possiblity as they are very big sheets of glass.
So these are the only two pictures I took.The first is looking south towards Avoca and the second is sea foam being blown up the pathway from the beach at North Avoca.
As a postscript I have just read that the biggest wave ever recorded off the NSW coast was on Tuesday and it was 14.9 metres in height.I am not sure how you measure a wave but that is big.Certainly some of the waves we could see on Tuesday afternoon from our house were enormous.

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