Illawarra residents are being urged to prepare for the looming storm season, with widespread heavy rain, dangerous winds and possible flash-flooding predicted.
The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast spring is likely to herald above-average rainfall for people living in the east of Australia, as well as cooler days and warmer nights, after the wettest winter since 2016.
It is already forecasting a 90 per cent chance of rain on Wednesday; 80 per cent on Thursday; 70 per cent on Friday and 50 per cent on Saturday in the Illawarra. The NSW storm season officially starts on Friday.
The start of Spring always signals the start of the storm season and this year the SES is better prepared than ever.
An SES spokesperson said the service had been gearing up over winter to respond to whatever nature has in store for the months ahead. That included a $4.6 million investment in prototype rescue vehicles, including six new 'unimogs' that can operate in flood waters up to 1.2 metres.
Police and emergency services minister David Elliott said the state also had a new Mobile Incident Command Centre to improve co-ordination during extreme weather events.
"It can be easily deployed to any location around the state, and further improves the NSW SES prompt co-ordination and response to natural disasters," he said.
NSW SES commissioner Carlene York said volunteers were ready to respond, but communities needed to be equally prepared with an emergency kit and an evacuation plan: "We urge every household to discuss their risk and visit the SES website to find a range of valuable resources to help you prepare."
Commissioner York said a $56.4 million NSW SES Fleet Replacement Program was also on track to deliver 270 vehicles, 124 marine vessels and 95 trailers to some of the most flood-prone regions in the state.
Find out how tp plan storm and flood events here.
Find information about the latest weather warnings and forecasts here.
For emergency assistance in storms or floods, call 132 500.
In life-threatening situations, call Triple Zero (000) immediately.