Brrrrrr! Melbourne shivers in 'classic Antarctic blast'

A police car in the snow in Victoria's Dandenong Ranges. Photo / Twitter, Victoria Police
A police car in the snow in Victoria's Dandenong Ranges. Photo / Twitter, Victoria Police

A bitter cold that brought winds, hail and snow to Victoria is set to continue for the state but destructive winds will dissipate.

The Bureau of Meteorology predicts today will have the worst of the weather, with temperatures close to zero expected across Victoria and strong winds and thunderstorms hitting coastal areas.

The cold air mass is a "classic Antarctic blast" that originated near the coast of Antarctica during the week, the Bureau said.

The State Emergency Service received more than 1000 calls following winds up to 100km/h that uprooted trees and caused widespread damage to property and roads.

SES duty officer Andrew Murton told the ABC the gusty conditions had played havoc across the state.

"Our volunteers have been kept fairly busy throughout the day," he said.

"Some of our busiest units have been Frankston, Hastings and the bayside suburbs of Melbourne."

Snow also fell in Victoria's northwest, with towns like Ballarat and Trentham hit by temperatures below 2 degrees.

The cold temperatures will make Melbourne shiver today.

"Wind chill is expected to be extreme through Melbourne. It will feel like zero through most of the day," senior meteorologist Adam Morgan said.

The SES is warning drivers to look out for black ice and drive to the conditions. The cold front is set to head east tonight, with conditions easing.

Meanwhile, Sydneysiders have received a chilly blast of winter and ice-cold winds after a powerful cold front moved across the southern part of the state this morning.

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a severe weather warning as damaging winds of up to 90km/h buffet the state, and has warned of possible blizzards for the Snowy Mountains.

While morning temperatures in Sydney were at 10C, the bureau says the wind-chill factor makes it feel a lot colder, with temperatures as low as 1C at Observatory Hill in the city, and minus 1C at Sydney Airport.

Perth residents have shivered through a cold night, as the temperature dropped close to freezing.

The Bureau of Meteorology recorded a low of 0.7C degrees just after 6.15am local time before it slowly ticked up to 1 degree after 6.30am.

It was the city's lowest winter temperature since July 25, 2012 when the thermometer hit 0.4 degrees.


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