Heavy rain batters NSW north and mid-north

Overnight storms have dumped rain on mid-north and northern NSW, with parts of the state on flood watch and no respite for at least another day.

Almost 100mm of rain fell on the mid-north coast overnight on Thursday while even greater totals hit the region from 9am on Friday. Bowraville was the hardest-hit area, receiving 195mm.

Flooding of rivers in the region is also likely from Saturday, with the Bellingen and Kalang Rivers already reporting minor to major flooding.

The Bureau of Meteorology’s Alex Majchrowski said the regions would cop more rainfall on Saturday and remain at risk of flooding.

The coastal trough driving the weather will enter southeast Queensland on Saturday night before strengthening and returning to NSW on Monday, bringing strong winds and dangerous sea conditions.

“Unfortunately it’s forecast to continue for the remainder of today before starting to ease off tomorrow,” Mr Majchrowski told AAP on Saturday.

“For today we’re forecasting up to 100-150mm in some parts of the mid-north coast and northern rivers before that rainfall starts to (move) further north.”

BOM maps show the area at greatest risk of severe weather conditions stretches from north of Kempsey to Evans Head. This takes in Coffs Harbour, Bellingen, Nambucca Heads and Grafton.

The NSW State Emergency Service has sent extra volunteers, including flood rescue technicians, to the area to cope with requests for help.

“We’re expecting we will see a lot of people in orange uniforms out and about helping the communities in which they live,” SES Chief Superintendent Greg Swindells told reporters on Friday.

The SES has advised that those caught up in flooding should never drive through flood water, and should seek refuge in the highest available place if required.

© AAP 2020