Australians are being told to brace for a serious soaking over the coming months, with storms and possible floods to follow over summer.
The latest climate outlook from the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) released on Thursday forecasts above average rainfall for the NT, SA, Queensland, NSW, Victoria and eastern Tasmania for October to December.
It's predicted the wet weather could last into the new year.
Chance of a wet and stormy summer doubles
It follows updated modelling from the BOM, which raised the La Niña outlook status to watch level.
This means the weather pattern is twice as likely to form, increasing the risk of severe weather events in the northern and eastern states, where there will be a 70 per cent chance of higher rainfall.
“This status change follows cooling in the tropical Pacific Ocean and an increase in the number of climate models suggesting La Niña thresholds may be reached in the coming months,” the latest climate driver update read.
“La Niña events increase the chances of above-average rainfall for northern and eastern Australia during spring and summer.”
SES expecting busy storm season
It comes as the NSW State Emergency Service begins preparations for the upcoming storm season, which traditionally runs from October to March.
Commissioner Carlene York said volunteers are expecting a busy few months with the updated modelling suggesting a heightened risk of heavy rain and flash flooding.
“During the previous storm season, we experienced major floods right across the state,” Commissioner York said.
“In fact, it wasn’t long ago our volunteers responded to the major flooding event that overwhelmed communities across the Hawkesbury-Nepean, Hunter and Mid North Coast.”
That event alone saw the service respond to more than 14,000 requests for assistance, including more than 1,000 flood rescues.
“The more you can do now to prepare, the less likely you’ll end up needing emergency assistance from our volunteers when these weather events hit,” Commissioner York warned.
Do you have a story tip? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.