Storm leaves a mark on Ballarat: several businesses flooded, roof collapsed

ONE business was forced to close indefinitely yesterday after thunderstorms lashed the Ballarat region on Tuesday night.

Several other  premises were flooded and had their roofs collapse.

Eight Below clothing store in Sturt Street locked its doors “until further notice” after storms left the shop flooded with the roof on the verge of caving in. 

Store owner Krissy Papsworth said she arrived to find a similar scene to the one she saw same time last year.

“I think it was almost to the day that this happened last year after big storms,” Ms Papsworth said. 

After spending most of the morning mopping up, Ms Papsworth said she had been forced to close the business because of the danger to customers.

“You only have to look at that roof to see that it’s about to come down,” she said.

El Artista Hairdressing owner Tania Alsop said she too arrived at work to find her business submerged in water. 

“It was absolutely everywhere,” Ms Alsop said. 

“There was literally water pouring down from the light fittings.”

An already saturated Ballarat recorded a further 26 millimetre of rain Tuesday night, taking the total rainfall measurement to more that 70 millimetre in two days.

Weatherzone meteorologist Brett Dutschke said it had been more than a year since 70 millimetre of rain was recorded over two consecutive days.

“It was the same time last year that 73 millimetre of rain was recorded in the region over two days,” Mr Dutschke said. 

The SES responded to eight requests in the region on Tuesday night including fallen trees creating traffic hazards in Soldiers Hill, Springdallah, Scarsdale and Elaine.

In Mt Mercer more than 750 Powercor customers were without power after lightning struck early yesterday morning. 

More thunderstorms were forecast last night with showers clearing this afternoon.