Australia Sydney urged to prepare for storms after 'most intense' season in four years
UN urges politicians to keep medevac laws
The head of the UN's human rights body says it's important not to dismiss as bigots or racists those who push back against refugees, but to tell human stories.And the head of the United Nation's human rights body has urged politicians to hold fast against the federal government's bid to repeal so-called medevac laws
The NSW State Emergency Service is warning Sydneysiders to brace for another damaging storm season this summer as new data reveals the city's worst-hit suburbs from last year.
NRMA Insurance data shows last summer was the most intense storm season in four years, with 61 per cent of all home insurance claims during 2018-19 triggered by storm damage. December was the worst month, with 86 per cent of claims resulting from storms including Sydney's worst hail storm in 20 years.
Suburbs in Sydney's north and west were the city's most storm-affected, while the Central Coast was also heavily hit. Berowra Heights, Castle Hill and Chipping Norton were the top three suburbs, followed by West Pennant Hills, Baulkham Hills, Casula, Quakers Hill, Berowra, Moorebank and Glenwood.
Federal Court urged to dismiss case against Frydenberg, Liu
The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) has urged the Federal Court to dismiss cases against Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Liberal MP Gladys Liu after they were each accused of using official AEC branding in mandarin election signs. Complainants argued signs deliberately misled voters by replicating official AEC branding.The case against Mr Frydenberg was filed by his unsuccessful Independent challenger Oliver Yates who is seeking to force a by-election in Kooyong.The AEC argued it was impossible to know whether voters changed their ballot based on the signs.
While the Bureau of Meteorology's severe weather outlook for this summer predicts an increased risk of heatwaves and bushfires, the potential for damaging storms remains.
NSW SES Deputy Commissioner Rob McNeill said he expects this season's storms to be severe, with "violent weather behaviour" predicted between October and March.
International clash baffles Sydney skipper
Sydney FC captain Alex Wilkinson cannot fathom why the A-League is kicking for 2019-20 in the middle of an international window.The Sky Blues will begin their championship defence on Friday against Adelaide United, 24 hours after Australia hosts Nepal in a World Cup qualifier in Canberra.
"We're likely to see storms that bring large hailstones, tornadoes, heavy rain, localised flash flooding and damaging winds," Deputy Commissioner McNeill told the Herald.
He said while the storm seasons were "pretty consistent over the decades", the biggest change in recent years was the season increasing in length.
"What is changing is the storm season corresponds with the bushfire season, which can give us some quite unusual situations like [in September] we had storms running through Sydney and also had bushfires impacting out in the Lithgow area."
As Sydney grows and the city's boundaries stretch further west, the expanding population means more people are impacted by damaging weather events.
"We see greater damage done due to more buildings, more people, more vehicles," Deputy Commissioner McNeill said.
"If a tree falls down in the middle of a paddock, it doesn't do damage to anyone. If it falls down in the middle of the suburbs of Wollongong or the Northern Beaches of Sydney or Katoomba, there is a chance to land on a car or damage some property."
Huge delays on Sydney trains as a man is killed in a station west of the city
Commuters have been told to prepare for significant delays on train lines across Sydney after a person died at Erskineville train station in Sydney's inner west.Commuters have been told to prepare for significant delays on train lines across Sydney after a person died at Erskineville train station.
As the storm season begins, residents are being warned to prepare, with NRMA Insurance manager Alex Mazzoni saying "prevention is key" to mitigate the risks of storm damage.
"Trim your branches, clear your gutters and secure loose items in your garden on your balcony. Severe weather can strike at any time, so these little actions can make a big difference," Mr Mazzoni said.
"What we're seeing is there’s an increased risk of storms along coast of NSW. A long-term trend that we're seeing is the risk of hail storms shifting south from more northerly areas [like northern NSW] to areas with larger populations like Newcastle, Gosford and Wollongong."
Deputy Commissioner McNeill lists three thing to watch out for this storm season: falling trees, ensuring loose items are tied down in strong winds, and avoiding driving through floods.
"Keep away from flood waters in general because they're extremely dangerous. So many times each year people think they can drive through floodwaters, they attempt it and they get into trouble, and that trouble can be quite serious trouble," he said.
'Stay angry': Racing fans fight to save Sydney Speedway from new metro .
The new metro corridor means a much-loved western Sydney icon will be wiped out, but racing fans won't go quietly.The speedway is one of 116 properties to be acquired and demolished by the NSW government in preparation for the new Sydney metro between Parramatta and the CBD.
Queenslanders urged to get ready for storm season
Queenslanders are being warned to get ready for storm season. The Weather Bureau is predicting an average number of cyclones, but they say they'll bring ...
Coast Guard urges boaters prepare for upcoming storm
It's going to get pretty bad, so we urge that you don't go out,” Seaman for the Coast Guard Johnathan Ford said.