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Massive hailstones pound Melbourne

Updated March 6, 2010 18:02:00

Hailstones piled up on a Melbourne street after a storm on March 6, 2010.

Hailstones piled up on a Melbourne street after a storm on March 6, 2010. (Audience submitted: Peter Risbey)

Severe thunderstorms have hit Melbourne as parts of Victoria are lashed by strong winds and large hail stones.

Hailstones the size of golf balls have hit the suburb of Melton, in Melbourne's west, as a line of storms moved through western Victoria.

Winds of more 100 kilometres an hour have been recorded at Melbourne Airport while nearly 40 millimetres of rain fell at Rockbank, west of Melbourne.

Streets across Melbourne's CBD have been flooded and police are warning people not to drive through the flooded areas after some motorists became trapped.

Trains and trams have been disrupted by the weather.

The Bureau of Meteorology says the storms will continue through to the evening and heavy rain is likely.

The State Emergency Service has responded to 1,500 calls for help .

Andrew Gissing from the SES says more storms are expected to hit Melbourne tonight.

"Our SES crews have been out on the road this afternoon responding to people with damaged roofs, also flash flood waters entering properties and also assisting other emergency services in response to the flash flooding and the hail damage this afternoon," he said.

ABC reporter Tom Nightingale was at Southern Cross Railway Station in the city when the storm hit.

He says the station was blocked off and commuters were stranded after hail damaged the roof.

"All of a sudden, with a really loud crash a whole bunch of hail and water just broke through the roof basically and fell on platform two, which is the one which is closest to Spencer Street," he said.

"It probably took a good half an hour for authorities to block it off to stop people from walking around where it was unsafe to do so."

The AFL had to abandon practice matches this afternoon because of the storm.

Tags: disasters-and-accidents, storm, weather, storm, vic, melbourne-3000

First posted March 6, 2010 15:34:00

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