DELUGE: Several parts of of Ballina Shire received more than 90mm last night.
DELUGE: Several parts of of Ballina Shire received more than 90mm last night. Greg Miller

More than 600 homes still without power

UPDATE 1pm: More than 600 homes are still without power after yesterday's storms.

In a statement, an Essential Energy spokesperson said more than 8,500 homes on the Northern Rivers "were affected by unplanned outages late yesterday as a result of strong storms moving through various areas, causing extensive damage to the electrical network".

"Crews responded immediately, conducting surveillance of the network to identify damage, securing safety and commencing necessary repairs".

"Crews worked late into the night isolating multiple problems enabling power to be restored to as many customers as possible.

"Just over 600 customers are still without power. 

"Essential Energy crews are working as quickly and safely as possible to get the power back on as soon as possible. Additional crews are travelling from other areas to assist with restoration efforts."

Essential Energy expects to have power restored to majority of customers today and reminds the public to stay at least eight metres away from fallen or damaged powerlines and call Essential Energy on 13 20 80 if they have any questions.

UPDATE, 12.30pm: ESSENTIAL Energy crews are still restoring power to homes in the region after last night's severe thunderstorm. 

An Essential Energy spokeswoman said more than 8500 customers were hit by power outages during the deluge. 

Areas affected included Goonellabah, Richmond Hill and McLeans Ridges, Mullumbimby, Ewingsdale, Kyogle, Ballina and Tweed Heads. 

"There's quite a lot of damage," the spokeswoman said. 

"Crews are being called in and power is being progressively restored."

ORIGINAL:

FLASH flooding hit a broad swathe of the Northern Rivers region last night with some areas receiving more than 90mm in a short period along with widespread blackouts.

A major blackout hit Mullumbimby - midway during the Mullumbimby Music Festival.

A huge storm cell formed in the mid-afternoon east of the Great Divide and moved rapidly north east towards the coast.

STORM CELL: Last night's heavy rainfall hit a huge swathe of the Northern Rivers.
STORM CELL: Last night's heavy rainfall hit a huge swathe of the Northern Rivers. BOM

Areas west of Casino and Kyogle such as Urbenbille had reports of giant hailstones measuring 5cm across, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.

The storm rapidly fanned out from Yamba and Evans Head in the south west to Woodenbong in the northwest and moved across Casino, Kyogle, Lismore, Alstonville, Ballina, Byron Shire and the Tweed, bringing intense, heavy rainfall along the coast.

Locations in Ballina Shire received the heaviest falls with 105mm at Houghlahans Creek and 97mm at Ballina.

Byron Shire received averages of more than 50mm.

The highest rainfall in the Lismore LGA was Corndale which received 69mm, while the Lismore guage received 46mm.

There was less rain further west but reports of hail.

Power outages hit Goonellabah, McLeans Ridges, Tintenbar, Ewingsdale, the Nimbin area and Mullumbimby.

There are no thunderstorms expected today, but continues showers are likely.



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