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Victoria floods claim second life as Sydney records coldest day in 37 years

Victoria’s floods have now claimed two lives, with a woman’s body found in a vehicle in flood waters south-west of Melbourne.

The woman’s body was found on Friday morning inside a vehicle off Maddens Bridge Road at Glenfyne, about 40km east of Warrnambool.

Victoria police said the woman was believed to be a 20-year-old named Nina, who went missing from nearby Simpson on Wednesday. A report will be prepared for the coroner but the death is not being treated as suspicious.

An older man was previously found dead on Thursday afternoon in his partially submerged car in the coastal Gippsland town of Woodside.

The wild Victorian weather has also resulted in the hospitalisation of two volunteers. The Bureau of Meteorology warned that more rain would fall in Gippsland on Friday.

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A flood evacuation warning has been reissued for Traralgon in the Gippsland region. Anyone near the Traralgon Creek was told on Friday afternoon to evacuate.

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The chief operations officer of the Victorian State Emergency Service, Tim Wiebusch, said that on Friday afternoon 100 roads remained closed, including parts of the Mount Dandenong Tourist Road and the Maroondah Highway near Melbourne.

The SES has had more than 7,550 requests for help over the past two days, with about 6,000 related to fallen trees. More than 2,110 of those requests are still active. More than 113,400 homes are still without power with 40,000 restored overnight.

“The challenge for our community in Traralgon is while the river has receded and the Princes Highway has reopened, we are expecting to see another 80-100mm of rain over the Traralgon catchment later today and throughout the night,” Wiebusch said on Friday. “The advice we have is that will result in renewed major flooding.”

There were also major flood warnings for the Yarra and Thompson rivers plus three moderate and eight minor warnings. A strong wind warning was issued on Friday for Gippsland Lakes and the eastern and central Gippsland coasts.

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Senior bureau meteorologist Dean Narramore said on Friday afternoon that “unfortunately there is a bit more rain to come”.

“We’re going to be seeing more rain coming up from the south,” he told reporters. “Right now, we have the rain moving up through the Bass Strait that’s going to move into … Gippsland tonight and into the early morning hours of tomorrow.”

Narramore said while the wind and rain would not be as strong as previous days the cumulative impact would result in “renewed river rises”.

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The state’s acting premier, James Merlino, said: “We know it is not over yet.”

Sydney, meanwhile, shivered through its coldest day in 37 years on Thursday with the temperature reaching just 10.3C as the cold front hit much of the eastern seaboard. The last time temperatures plunged below this level was 3 July 1984, when the city reached just 9.6C. Continue reading…..

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