Christmas chaos: Flights delayed after Sydney hit by heavy rain, flash flooding

Tyson Millar / NSW Incident Alerts

Shocking scenes transpired at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport (SYD) on Christmas Eve after the airport almost transformed into a body of water due to heavy rain and flash flooding.

Severe thunderstorms and heavy rainfall on December 24, 2023 led to flash flooding in the airport and city area of Sydney. Though the floods resulted in more than 20 delayed flights and cancellations at SYD airport on December 25, 2023, the airport remained open.

The affected services included seven Virgin Australia flights, six Qantas Airways flights, and three from Jetstar. Services operated by small regional airlines were also impacted by the bad weather. 

Video footage taken at the airport on December 25, 2023 and shared on social media shows baggage tow trucks trudging through the flooded airport tarmac like jet skis. 

The New South Wales (NSW) State Emergency Service carried out 20 flood rescues across Sydney between December 24 and 25, 2023, after the airport was hammered with 64 milliliters of rain during Christmas Eve.

According to Reuters, at least 10 people were killed throughout the country after severe thunderstorms battered the states of Victoria, New South Wales, and Queensland over the Christmas holidays. 

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