The Bureau Of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning for damaging winds across the south-west on Thursday.
Northerly winds will strengthen tomorrow as a cold front approaches from the west.
The front will gradually cross Victoria during Friday and Saturday.
Damaging northerly winds, averaging 50 to 60 km/h with peak gusts of around 90 km/h, are expected to develop about parts of the western and central ranges early Thursday morning, extending across the state from late Thursday morning.
Elevated peaks and southern aspects are most likely to be affected, and gusts about these areas are expected to reach up to 100 km/h.
Locations which may be affected include Warrnambool, Hamilton, Portland, Ballarat, the Otways, Bacchus Marsh, the Dandenong and Yarra Ranges, Mount Buller, Mount Baw Baw, Mount Hotham and Falls Creek.
Thursday across the south-west will be mostly sunny with a medium (40 per cent) chance of late showers in the west, slight (20 per cent) chance elsewhere.
Overnight temperatures will fall to between 12 and 15 with daytime temperatures reaching the mid to high 20s.
The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
- 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.
- Be aware - heat, fire or recent storms may make trees unstable and more likely to fall when it's windy or wet.
- Check that loose items, such as outdoor settings, umbrellas and trampolines are safely secured. 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.
- Stay away from fallen power lines - always assume they are live.
- Be aware that in fire affected areas, rainfall run-off into waterways may contain debris such as ash, soil, trees and rocks. Heavy rainfall may also increase the potential for landslides and debris across roads.
- Stay informed: Monitor weather warnings, forecasts and river levels at the Bureau of Meteorology website, and warnings through VicEmergency website/app/hotline.
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