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Hazardous Weather Warning: Large Swell, Strong Winds and Rain to Hit NSW Coast

Hazardous weather conditions are forecast for the NSW coastline from Today, Monday 13 July, and throughout much of the week.

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a Hazardous Surf Warning and a Marine Wind Warning for much of the NSW coast. The hazardous weather conditions are forecast to impact progressively up the NSW coast from late today, Monday 13 July, through to at least Wednesday 15 July.

Conditions are expected to be hazardous for coastal activities such as rock fishing, boating, surfing and swimming. People should consider staying out of the water and avoid walking near surf-exposed areas. Rock fishers should avoid coastal rock platforms exposed to the ocean and seek a safe location that is sheltered from the surf.

Joel Wiseman, Director of Lifesaving at Surf Life Saving NSW, said that conditions along the coast will be very dangerous for the next few days.

“During this extreme weather event we urge members of the public to stay away from the coastline and not to engage in risky coastal activities. If people put themselves in danger in these extreme conditions, there’s a real possibility that lifesavers will not be able to save them,” said Joel Wiseman.

With sea swells up to four metres forecast, heavy rain and damaging winds in some locations, there is a chance of coastal inundation, erosion and flooding in low-lying areas. 

Surf Life Saving NSW has emergency call-out teams, Duty Officers and surf rescue assets on standby. The Surf Rescue 30 Offshore Rescue Boat based in Sydney, Surf Rescue 40 and Surf Rescue 50 jetboats and crews will also be on standby in Ballina and Kiama to respond to any critical coastal incidents.

Supporting the offshore rescue boats will be RWC (jetski) operations and the SLSNSW State Operations Centre will be operational between 7am and 5pm – with support services extended as required. Surf Rescue emergency call-out teams will remain on high alert.

In addition to strong wind and high sea swell, the Bureau of Meteorology has also forecast significant rainfall which may impact water quality at many NSW beaches this week.

The high wind and large surf conditions mean most beaches and rock platforms in particular will be treacherous this week. Surf Life Saving NSW Director of Lifesaving, Joel Wiseman urges the public to take extreme caution if they are visiting the coast.

“The forecast low pressure system will produce high winds, damaging surf with significant wave height and substantial rainfall. It will create extremely dangerous conditions for swimmers, surfers, rock fishers and boaters,” said Joel Wiseman.

Visit beachsafe.org.au or download the Beachsafe App, to find patrolled locations and up-to-date beach conditions.

Since 1 July 2020, five people have drowned on the NSW coastline. During the 2019/20 season, 42 people drowned on the NSW coastline – two above the 10-year average.

Hazardous Surf Conditions Safety Tips:

  • Avoid rock fishing and water activities on exposed beaches/rock-shelves
  • Only swim at patrolled beaches, between the red & yellow flags. See the Beachsafe Website for patrolled locations/times          
  • Check the official Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) forecast before undertaking rock fishing and water activities 
  • Boaties should seek advice from Marine Rescue NSW and always wear a lifejacket 
  • If witnessing an in-water emergency dial Triple Zero (000) – Police.
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