Source: Bureau of Meteorology

For people in Central, South West, Northern Country, North Central, West and South Gippsland, Wimmera and parts of East Gippsland, Mallee and North East Forecast Districts.

Issued at 11:19 am Sunday, 19 December 2021.
Squally thunderstorms likely across Victoria

Weather Situation: A rapidly moving cold front will enter the southwest of the State this morning. A strong upper atmospheric system will further support thunderstorms near and east of the cold front.

Severe thunderstorms are likely to produce damaging winds over the next several hours in the Central, South West, North Central, Wimmera and parts of the Mallee, Northern Country and West and South Gippsland districts. Locations which may be affected include Horsham, Warrnambool, Bendigo, Seymour, Maryborough, Ballarat, Geelong and Melbourne.

Severe thunderstorms are likely to produce damaging winds and heavy rainfall that may lead to flash flooding over the next several hours in the West and South Gippsland and parts of the Central, East Gippsland, Northern Country, North Central and North East districts.
Locations which may be affected include Morwell, Traralgon, Sale, Moe, Maffra and Mt Buller.

The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
* If driving conditions are dangerous, safely pull over away from trees, drains, low-lying areas and floodwater. Avoid travel if possible.
* Stay safe by avoiding dangerous hazards, such as floodwater, mud, debris, damaged roads and fallen trees.
* Be aware - heat, fire or recent storms may make trees unstable and more likely to fall when it's windy or wet.
* Check that loose items, such as outdoor settings, umbrellas and trampolines are safely secured. Move vehicles under cover or away from trees.
* Stay indoors and away from windows.
* If outdoors, move to a safe place indoors. Stay away from trees, drains, gutters, creeks and waterways.
* Stay away from fallen powerlines - always assume they are live.
* Be aware that in fire affected areas, rainfall run-off into waterways may contain debris such as ash, soil, trees and rocks. Heavy rainfall may also increase the potential for landslides and debris across roads.
* Stay informed: Monitor weather warnings, forecasts and river levels at the Bureau of Meteorology website, and warnings through VicEmergency website/app/hotline.