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Adelaide's wettest July day in 75 years keeps SES busy

Tuesday July 5, 2016 - 12:23 EST
ABC image
Reflections on the water after rain in Adelaide's Parklands. - ABC

Adelaide has recorded its wettest July day in 75 years and it even snowed a little on Mount Lofty last night.

The wild weather kept the State Emergency Service (SES) busy overnight with more than 200 calls for help across the metropolitan area since Monday evening.

The SES's Aaron Blasch said the majority of callouts were from the southern suburbs.

"It started off mainly with water-related things so flooding and salvage-type jobs, bit of minor flooding," he said.

"As we got put past midnight it's turned into trees falling down as the winds picked up and the rain eased just a little."

He said the SES believed more calls for assistance would be made after people woke up and found trees down near their homes.

More than 2,000 properties across the city were without power this morning.

Gale force winds were reported at Hindmarsh Island on Monday evening and at Outer Harbor this morning. Gusts of 102 kilometres per hour have been reported at Cape Willoughby.

Meanwhile, rain gauges were filling up across the city with 37 millimetres of rain at Kent Town since 9:00am yesterday to about 6:00am today — breaking a record from the mid 1970s.

The Bureau of Meteorology's Simon Timcke said heavier rainfalls were recorded around Adelaide Hills and the southern suburbs with more than 54 millimetres recorded at Kuitpo and 60 millimetres at Kangarilla.

"If we take the West Terrace site into account as well it is our wettest July day since 1941, 14th July 1941, when there was 39.1 mm so we might nudge over that," he said before 6:00am.

He said it was even cold enough for a light dusting of snow at Mount Lofty.

"It was enough to settle on the ground for a brief period I think but that was sort of very early evening ... the temperature at Mount Lofty was about half a degree at that point."

There are weather warning for farmers, road condition, a marine wind warning and a severe weather warning current for South Australia.

More shelter needed for the homeless

Shelter SA called on the State Government to increase funding for homeless services because a lack of night shelter was leaving people out in the cold.

Executive director Alice Clark said the Franklin Street bus station, which has been made available on cold nights, was not open last night.

"People who are sleeping out suffer more in extremes of weather, both heat and cold, but if you did get wet and your clothes are wet or your shoes and socks are wet it would be impossible to get warm on a night like that," she said.

Ms Clark said the Government needed to take responsibility for the "vulnerable people".

"We're not talking about thousands of people. I think the numbers are manageable that we should be able to do better in South Australia," she said.

Housing SA executive director Philip Fagan-Schmidt said several facilities, including St Vincent de Paul and Catherine House, have beds available.

"On an ongoing basis it's far more important to use our established network," he said.

"The sort of services that are out there are far better equipped than, for example, the bus station which was used just for a once-off."


© ABC 2016

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