ALMOST 200mm of rain could saturate the central Queensland coast over the next few days as Ex-tropical cyclone Penny inches closer to the state.
There are warnings that between 100mm and 180mm could fall in just six hours.
Meanwhile thunderstorms are expected for the rest of the week in New South Wales with a heatwave looking likely for the southern states towards the weekend.
Early on Wednesday morning the tropical low was located 115km east of Bowen in the Pacific Ocean and was moving towards the coast at 6km/h.
The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has said the system formerly know as Penny is expected to turn a corner and head northwards, paralleling the Burdekin coast, before making landfall on Thursday around Cairns.
"The system is not expected to redevelop into a tropical cyclone, but will still be capable of producing areas of heavy rainfall over its southern flank," the BOM said in a statement.
Gusts of around 80km/h were recorded across Hamilton Island and 190mm of rain around the Proserpine area ahead of the storm.
It's only going to get worse.
Some heavy #rain has been recorded in the last 24 hours on the central coast as ex-tropical #CyclonePenny approaches the coast. Preston, near #Proserpine, had 191mm to 9am Wednesday and #Carmila had 141mm. See the rainfall here: https://t.co/OepYeivwrE #IfItsFloodedForgetIt pic.twitter.com/D51C2zUVgI— Bureau of Meteorology, Queensland (@BOM_Qld) January 8, 2019
The BOM has issued a severe weather warning for heavy rain between Townsville and Yeppoon from Wednesday and into Thursday morning.
Townsville could see from 60 to more than 100mm leading up to Friday. Innisfail is looking at up to 190mm and Cairns 170mm with more rain on the weekend.
Sky News Weather's Rob Sharpe said on Monday that the ex-cyclone could potentially then track across Queensland into the Gulf of Carpentaria and towards Darwin bringing all that moisture to the Top End on the weekend.
Darwin will be 34C with storms developing from midweek with up to 30mm of rain on Sunday and Monday if Penny does indeed come through.
Brisbane should remain more settled with little rain and highs of around 30C.
STORMS FOR NEW SOUTH WALES
Unsettled weather could continue throughout New South Wales until Friday.
Storms, some severe, are possible from Sydney down to Albury via Wagga Wagga, Wollongong and Canberra.
In Sydney, expect 25C on Wednesday rising to the high-20s by the weekend.
Expect hotter temperatures, well into the mid-30s on the west side of the Great Dividing Range.
A cool change pushed through Melbourne on Tuesday afternoon and that has seen temperatures drop to a high of just 20C on Wednesday. But it will be back up to 32C by Friday.
SCORCHING HEATWAVE APPROACHING
Hot weather is on its way for major centres, said Mr Sharpe.
"The heat is really focused on the far north, particularly around the Pilbara, but by the time we get to Friday that heat will transfer down into South Australia and then will keep on intensifying over the weekend.".
"It will linger there and by the time we get to early next week we could be in a very significant heatwave for southern parts of the country."
Sydney is still looking mild and summery going into next week but Melbourne is set to rise to a sweltering 36C by Monday - although a lot can change in a week.
Closer to the desert winds, Adelaide will feel the heat earlier. It will be 26C on Wednesday but then a whopping 39C on Friday and again on Monday, with temperatures in the mid-30s in between.
Perth could get to 33C today, slipping in to the high-20s midweek before rising to 35C again on Saturday.
Canberra is bobbing around the 26-30C mark and then heating up to 35C on Saturday with some showers this week and possible storms on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Expect a low of 19C in a cloudy Hobart on Wednesday but then rising to 28C on Saturday.