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Wild storms strike NSW and Queensland

Ben Domensino, Tuesday January 2, 2018 - 16:58 EDT

Powerful winds tore the roof off a pub in NSW this afternoon as severe thunderstorms lashed Australia's eastern states.

A low pressure trough being fed by moisture-laden winds off the Tasman and Coral Seas caused multiple storms over parts of Queensland and NSW during Tuesday afternoon.

While a number of warnings were issued, one particularly powerful storm received a lot of attention after causing significant structural damage to buildings near Yamba.

The storm intensified rapidly as it moved from the inland ranges towards the coast and produced winds powerful enough to remove a large portion of the roof at the Clarence Hotel in Maclean.

There were also reports of trees uprooted and small structures overturned in the Maclean region, which lies on the Clarence River to the west of Yamba.

Other severe thunderstorms in NSW caused rain rates of more than 60mm per hour in the Northern Rivers District on Tuesday afternoon, while Evans Head registered a wind gust of 76km/h shortly before 3pm.

As of 5pm, warnings were also in place for storms to the west of Sydney, which had developed over the ranges and tracked towards the city's western suburbs.

In Queensland, severe thunderstorm warnings were also issued from the Central Highlands and Coalfields down to the South East District during the afternoon, including densely populated areas around Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

The latest severe thunderstorm warnings are available at: http://www.weatherzone.com.au/warnings.jsp

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2018

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