More storms are on the way in the state as health authorities closely monitor a high-risk weather situation in multiple regions and alert asthma sufferers.
More dangerous thunderstorms and destructive winds are expected to batter parts of Victoria on Sunday.
The weather bureau previously issued a severe thunderstorm warning for destructive winds over the next several hours in the state’s north, with Yarrawonga recording wind gusts of 100 km/h on Sunday afternoon.
The warning has since been downgraded.
But damaging winds with peak gusts predicted to reach 110km/h could still sweep other parts of Victoria – and even stronger gusts were also possible.
Locations likely to be affected included Bendigo, Shepparton, Seymour, Maryborough, Ballarat, Geelong, Melbourne, Wodonga, Wangaratta, Traralgon and Bairnsdale.
The bureau has also issued a severe weather warning for the state’s west and east, with damaging north-westerly winds averaging 60-80km/h expected to hit parts of Gippsland.
It comes as health authorities increased an epidemic thunderstorms asthma warning in regional Victoria.
The Department of Health on Saturday warned of high risk conditions in the state’s North East and East Gippsland across the weekend.
“Today’s epidemic thunderstorm asthma risk is high in four of the nine weather districts in Victoria and moderate in central and West and South Gippsland,” the department said in a statement.
“The combination of forecast high grass pollen levels and thunderstorms with strong winds means that there is a chance that a large number of people may develop asthma symptoms over a short period of time.”
Authorities pleaded with those who suffered asthma to be particularly cautious given hospital services were already grappling with “significant demand” of Covid-19 patients.
The department advised those in the high risk regions to adhere to the following steps:
- Monitor the epidemic thunderstorm asthma risk forecast on the VicEmergency app
- Avoid being outdoors in a storm, especially the winds that precede them
- Take your preventive medication as directed, even when you’re symptom free
- Carry your reliever and know how to manage an asthma attack. Follow your asthma action plan or use asthma first aid.
The daughter of a broadacre farmer in the state’s north east says that if the thunderstorms bring heavy rain, it “could be catastrophic”, with some crops yet to come in.