Vic winds down trees, cut power, fan fires

Callum Godde
·2-min read

Strong winds have lashed Victoria, downing trees, cutting power and fanning bushfires.

The state was buffeted by damaging winds on Sunday evening, with peak gusts of 120km/h and 111km/h at Mount Buller and Falls Creek.

Peak winds hit 70 to 90km/h across Melbourne, while Gippsland in the east wasn't spared the lashing as the Latrobe Valley recorded a 91km/h gust.

In the past 24 hours to midday on Monday, Victoria's State Emergency Service said it had received more than 1200 calls for help.

Of those, 995 were for fallen trees and 116 for building damage.

Lilydale (32 calls), Diamond Creek (24) and Greensborough (21) were the hardest-hit suburbs in the city.

The strong winds also left a mess to clean up in Gippsland, with 119 calls for SES units in Morwell (49), Moe (35) and Warragul (35).

A Moe resident was forced to relocate after a tree fell onto their residence overnight, while at Corio near Geelong a tin roof was blown off a shed on Monday morning.

Only 230 of the jobs remained active, the SES said.

AusNet, electricity provider for the state's east, reported about 21,000 customers were without power at 1pm.

Supplier for Victoria's west, Powercor, also had about 7000 outages.

Bushfires have sprung up in the state's far west including a blaze at the Little Desert National Park near Dimboola that prompted a watch and act alert on Sunday evening, before being downgraded.

Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Tom Delamotte said dry lightning strikes had been recorded on Sunday morning and the resulting fires were then fanned by hot and windy conditions in the afternoon.

"That did trigger a few fires across the Mallee and the Wimmera," he said on Monday.

"Some of those fires are still going this morning but (were) very active once that wind got going yesterday afternoon and also the temperatures increased as well.

"We did see temperatures get as high as 38 degrees over the northwest of the state yesterday."

A severe weather warning remains in place on Monday for damaging winds for areas including Warrnambool, Geelong, Victoria's Surf Coast, Mornington Peninsula and southern parts of Gippsland.

But relief from the hot and blustery weather isn't far away, with the mercury tipped to max out in the high teens and mid-20s for Tuesday and Wednesday.

"We do have a day or two of very settled weather on the way for Victoria," Mr Delamotte said.

"(It'll) also be much cooler as we go into Tuesday as well so a good opportunity to open up the house a bit and let that cooler air come back through."