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Heavy rain for Victoria as Melbourne's COVID restrictions ease for outdoor activities

By ABC weather presenter Paul Higgins, Monday September 27, 2021 - 22:53 EST
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A meteorologist at the Bureau of Meteorology says we can expect a pretty wet day on Wednesday as restrictions ease. - ABC

It's called the spring swing. That time of the year when you're wearing your winter woollies one day and a T-shirt the next.

And this September, Melbourne's daytime highs have ranged from a teeth-chattering 13 (and feeling much colder in the wind) to a balmy 27 degrees.

But there's another kind of swing many Melburnians have been missing.

The joys of swinging a golf club, cricket bat or tennis racquet.

And from this Wednesday, under a modest easing of COVID restrictions, that will be possible again.

That is, if the weather allows it. In a cruel twist, rain is on the way on Wednesday.

And not just a shower or two, but 20 to 35 millimetres over two days.

There's even the chance of thunderstorms, mostly during the afternoon. And lightning and umbrellas on golf courses can be a lethal mix.

Chris Arvier, a meteorologist at the Bureau of Meteorology said: "It's looking like a pretty wet day on Wednesday, right through from essentially midnight".

"We're seeing areas of rain and thunderstorms right across the state. The most significant activity will be in northern and central parts of the state."

At this stage, 20 to 50mm of rain is on the cards over the northern country and north-east districts, with higher isolated totals from hit and miss thunderstorms.

That could lead to localised flash flooding. And there's a chance of some minor riverine flooding as the rain falls on already wet ground.

All of the instability in our weather is being driven by a deepening low that's expected to move over southern NSW. But its track is still uncertain. If it moves.

Further to the south, rain totals will increase across Victoria. At this stage, the Mallee and Gippsland will have between 5 and 20mm.

So should you pencil in a game for Thursday?

Not so fast, according to Mr Arvier.

"While conditions ease a little bit, Thursday's still looking quite active as well," he said.

Even on Saturday and Sunday, we're likely to have a shower or two.

Melbourne's parks, gardens and golf courses are looking lush and green thanks to an above-average 65mm of rain so far this month. But it might be a while before the soggy ground underfoot has a chance to dry out again.

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© ABC 2021

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