A severe weather warning has been issued for Ballarat, as strong winds approach the region during an unusually hot period for this time of year.
The temperature is expected to reach 32 degrees in Ballarat today and 36 on Thursday.
The Bureau of Meteorology is now warning of damaging winds in the region, expected to arrive on Thursday morning.
Damaging northerly winds, averaging 60 to 70 km/h with peak gusts of 90 to 100 km/h, are expected to develop within the warning area Thursday morning. Peak wind gusts may reach up to 110km/h about elevated areas above 500 metres.
A cooler west to southwesterly change will move through the warning area during the afternoon and evening. Gusts of 90 to 100 km/h are possible with the change, mainly near the coast.
Isolated thunderstorm activity could also produce wind gusts of 100km/h on Thursday.
The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
- Check that loose items such as outdoor settings, umbrellas and trampolines are safely secured and move vehicles under cover or away from trees.
- Stay indoors and away from windows.
- If outdoors, move to a safe place indoors. Stay away from trees, drains, gutters, creeks and waterways.
- If driving conditions are dangerous, safely pull over away from trees, drains, low-lying areas and floodwater. Avoid travel if possible.
- Stay safe by avoiding dangerous hazards, such as floodwater, mud, debris, damaged roads and fallen trees.
- Stay away from fallen powerlines always assume they are live.
- Stay informed monitor weather warnings, forecasts and river levels at the Bureau of Meteorology website, and warnings through VicEmergency.