East coast storms: Tornado rips through Armidale as supercell storms linger over Qld and Northern NSW

Wild storms, damaging hail, and severe winds are threatening to hit parts of the east coast after a tornado ripped through a NSW town.

Shaken Armidale residents are in clean-up mode after a tornado ripped through town late on Thursday night, flipping a car, knocking down power poles, and tearing roofs of homes.

People were trapped in their homes as the tornado hit the northern NSW community around 11pm, with extensive damage believed to have occurred throughout the region, causing widespread power outages.

Police and State Emergency Service had responded to more than 120 calls for assistance in the town, with more expected as residents wake up to the damage on Friday.

“I spent 30 years in the tropics and the damage looks the same as cyclone damage,” one Northern Tablelands Twitter user wrote.

“Power still out and unbelievable damage on our side of town, so many people affected,” Dr Manu Saunders said.

Sky News Weather meteorologist Alison Osborne said the worst of Thursday’s storm system appeared to be over for southern and inland NSW, but the slow-moving supercells still posed a threat to many.

Residents of southern Queensland and Northern NSW were bracing for more horror weather on Friday morning as the tail end of a vicious supercell system whips around.

Warnings were live for giant hail, severe winds, and heavy rain across Brisbane, Toowoomba, Gold Coast and the Northern Rivers Regions of NSW as wild weather that lashed the region lingers for a second day.

“The atmospheric system over the south east is still very conducive to storms,” she said.

“They might be scattered but they are still dangerous.

“It’s all happened right on cue – the mid spring storm season is here.”

Residents in southern Queensland and northern NSW are being urged to get their cars under cover, secure loose outdoor items, and avoid using the telephone with damaging winds and giant hailstones a real possibility on Friday morning.

Hundreds of calls were made to emergency services on Thursday as wild weather lashed the nation’s east coast, pelting Sydney and regional NSW with hail and lifting the roof off a Mount Druitt Shopping Centre.

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