Wild weather hits Hawkesbury: trees, power lines down

TREES came down and power went out in numerous Hawkesbury suburbs on Tuesday night when a wild wind and electrical storm lashed our region.

By Wednesday morning, a large amount of suburban Hawkesbury was out of power including 567 Endeavour Energy customers at South Windsor, 234 at Richmond, 1127 at North Richmond, 257 at Windsor, 714 at Wilberforce, 24 at McGraths Hill and 500 at Kurrajong, according to the Endeavour Energy website.

The Bureau of Meteorology recorded wind gusts of 102 kilometres at Richmond between 10.20pm and 10.30pm Tuesday.

Trees, weakened by years of drought and recent flooding, came down on houses, cars and across power lines, including a large tree at Windsor South Public School that crashed over into an awning.

Windsor South Public School posted on Facebook on Wednesday morning: "Due to storm damage the Canteen & Cottage will be unavailable until further notice. If the children require a sandwich, please see the office staff. Thank you."

According to NSW SES Hawkesbury Unit Controller, Kevin Jones, the local SES crew received 150 requests for help from around 10.30pm Tuesday through to the following morning.

"[Calls] reached from Berambing down to Vineyard and beyond, all the way through Kurrajong Heights, Kurrajong, Glossodia, Freemans Reach, Wilberforce, East Kurrajong, and Mcgraths Hill," he said.

"Interestingly, the storm must have been a narrow band of wind coming through because SES Hornsby had almost the same amount of requests for help as us, if not more, and the Hills area did as well."

He said most of the damage was caused by "very large trees blocking roads".

"Quite a few jobs were trees blocking roads and tangled up in power lines, which complicates things, because we can't touch anything until Endeavour Energy deems it safe. Council can't do anything either, until they know the lines are de-energised," Mr Jones said.

Council workers were still working on Thursday to get some roads open around the Hawkesbury.

"Part of the problem is the difficulty of the size of some of the trees, they were massive," Mr Jones said.

Some of the more unusual call-outs SES responded to were trees that "went up onto houses and vehicles".

"In Glossodia, on Golden Valley Drive, a tree went across two or three houses, that was fairly big," Mr Jones said.

"Miraculously, no one was hurt that I'm aware of. There were a few near misses when people [in cars] ran into trees that were down on roads and there were some very near misses when trees came down very close to crushing houses that had people sleeping in their bedrooms."

He said it was a "very extreme storm", and one of the biggest he had seen.

"It's not something we see very often in the Hawkesbury, with that amount of damage around. It was a very extreme event for us," Mr Jones said.

He pointed out the efforts of "all the SES and Council and Endeavour Energy workers" who "worked very hard to get it fixed and get life back to normal" for the community.

According to Mr Jones, the local SES unit received the majority of calls around 11pm on Tuesday night, and they worked through the night on Tuesday and all day Wednesday.

"Today we are still getting the odd call in for different things so we've still got a little bit to go," he said on Thursday.

"There are still around eight or nine unresolved issues that we have to get finished some time today.

"We expect it will be a few days until we finally get everything sorted and cleaned, but the vast majority is done."