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Thousands without power as weather eases

Wednesday October 2, 2013 - 22:54 EST
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A Toll ship tries to dock at the Burnie wharf during Wednesday's wild weather - ABC
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Tree limbs are removed from a tree that fell on a Legana house. - ABC
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Power lines and trees block the road at Westbury - ABC

Power crews have restored supplies to 6,000 Tasmanian customers who were cut off during today's extreme weather.

But Aurora Energy says more than 3,000 are still waiting to be reconnected.

The state-owned company says there were more than 100 separate blackouts, as 100 kilometre an hour winds and torrential rain brought down power lines and trees in the north and north west.

Jason King from Aurora says it is hoped the majority of customers will be back online before crews finish work for the night.

"The major areas at the moment which is causing us problems is Ulverstone, with 2,500 customers still off in Ulverstone and Ulverstone West," he said.

"The crews are on site now, and we are hoping to make some repairs in the next hour or so, so there's a good chance that we may get all those customers back on."

Meanwhile, emergency service crews are now confident Huonville in the south will not be affected by the flooded Huon River overnight.

Forecasters say the worst is over

The State Emergency Service says it has responded to more than 100 calls from people needing help as heavy rains and high winds pounded the north.

Mhairi Revie from the northern division of the SES says crews have been dealing with damaged and flooded properties.

"When people return from work and discover perhaps some damage to their properties that they haven't been there for, that's when we'll get another burst of call outs," she said.

The bad weather has forced TasRail to shut its entire network until at least Thursday morning, when the tracks will be inspected.

Forecaster Anna Forrest says conditions are easing.

"Particularly the eastern half of the state has still got the frontal system to come through, but the remainder of the state, the western half and across the north west, should start to see an easing in conditions, at least as far as the weather's concerned, the wind's probably going to take a little bit longer to moderate," she said.

State Emergency services' Mhairi Revie says locals in the greater Launceston area can collect sandbags from the S-E-S in Youngtown to protect their properties from flash flooding.

"It's really about grabbing half a dozen sandbags and putting them as a precaution over things like your doorways, maybe over your garage, those sort of low-lying areas in your property where you think water might run into," she said.

Ms Revie says properties in the Kings Meadows area and Newstead shopping strip may be at risk of flash flooding.


- ABC

© ABC 2013

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