Residents in outback NSW are rainfall weary as dams overflow and wet weather continues, as a severe system brings a widespread risk of flooding, thunderstorms and hail.
Locals in the small cotton and wool town of Warren have been dealing with consistent rain since December, owner of the Macquarie Caravan Park Carolyn Monkley told AAP.
The park's campground flooded on Wednesday. Floodwaters also cut roadways into the town, stranding a team of hospital staff at the park.
"It hasn't been hammering with rain, but we have had such a lot of rain consistently, basically since Christmas, that it just doesn't have a chance to dry out," she said.
"Rainfall here is totally different to rainfall on the coast. A couple of inches out here makes it very very, very soggy."
The Macquarie River reached major flood levels at Warren on Wednesday, as nearby Burrendong Dam, which is above full capacity, continued to release flows into the river.
The deluge comes close to harvest season with farmers already facing a number of setbacks, as they prepare to work through a third consecutive La Nina season.
NSW Farmers Business, Economics and Trade Committee chair John Lowe said the severe weather threatened to destroy remaining crops, and there was already extensive flood damage on rural NSW properties and roads.
"Once the skies clear and the floodwaters recede, we're going to need an enormous, concerted effort to get our infrastructure up to scratch," he said.
NSW Premier Dominic Perrotter said residents needed to prepare for a "difficult week" and "difficult summer", as the severe weather moves across the state, soaking already-saturated catchments.
"Our rivers and dams are full, that creates a significant risk of flooding that creates a risk to people's lives and properties," he said.
Communities in western and southwestern parts of the state, including many already impacted by floods, are in the path of the current rain band, Assistant SES commissioner Sean Kearns said.
"What we're going to see is significant amounts of rain, sometimes the monthly rainfall in just a couple of days, if not more," he told ABC TV on Wednesday.
He urged drivers to take heed of conditions, especially people out for school holidays on unfamiliar roads.
Louise Roberts, who works in the Dubbo Visitors Information Centre, told AAP a number of major highways were closed in central NSW, with drivers anxious about how to get through.
The centre itself, on the Macquarie River, was at risk of becoming isolated by rising waters and may close this week.
Severe weather warnings are in place from southern Queensland, large parts of inland NSW through to northern Victoria, with a risk of flash flooding, renewed riverine flooding, severe thunderstorms producing large hail, damaging winds and heavy rainfall on Wednesday.
The warning area extends over inland NSW from Tibooburra in the northeast to Wilcannia in the central west, through to Parkes and Dubbo in central NSW and north to the Queensland border.
Widespread moderate to major flooding is likely across inland NSW, as rain leads to renewed river rises, with flood warnings already in place for more than a dozen inland rivers.
Rainfall totals of up to 15 to 30mm are expected with localised falls of up to 100mm possible, with inland towns including Deniliquin, Griffith, Hay, Cobar, Bourke and Brewarrina on alert for possible flooding.
Hazardous surf and swells are expected on the Macquarie, Hunter, Sydney and Illawarra coasts on Wednesday, with strong and dangerous coastal winds developing on Thursday.
Much of NSW will experience showers and isolated thunderstorms on Thursday afternoon, with severe thunderstorms, heavy rainfall, possible hail and damaging winds for the state's southwest.
Flood warnings are current across inland catchments including the Namoi, Macquarie, Bogan, Lachlan, Murrumbidgee, Murray, Edward, Culgoa, Birrie, Bokhara, Warrego, Paroo, Barwon, Darling, Macintyre and Snowy rivers.
A flood watch has also been issued for coastal catchments including the Hunter, Hawkesbury and Colo rivers, and Wollombi Brook, with rises expected from Thursday to Friday.