| 09.08,19. 07:32 AM |
BOM weather warning issued for dangerous winds and blizzards in NSW, Vic and SA
Photo: Mount Buller has welcomed the snowfalls in the lead-up to the Victorian Interschools snowsports events. (Supplied: Tony Harrington/Mount Buller)
Destructive winds have lashed parts of Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales as a deep polar low moved across the country's south-east.
The Bureau of Meteorology has issued several severe weather warnings in each of the three states in what is expected to be the strongest cold outbreak so far this winter.
In Victoria, the strongest winds began at 3:00am and were expected to intensify until about 9:00am in Melbourne.
State Emergency Management Commissioner Andrew Crisp said peak wind gusts could reach up to 130 kilometres per hour in the state's south-west.
"It is going to get an awful lot colder," Mr Crisp said.
"We're not used to getting those gusts very often in Melbourne, so it's going to have an impact and we need to pay attention to that."
Wind gusts of over 100kph had already been recorded in some parts of South Australia, raising dust, bringing down trees and leaving thousands of homes without power.
Adelaide is bracing for gusts in excess of 125kph, which could also impact Port Lincoln, Whyalla, Renmark, Mount Gambier and Naracoorte.
The State Emergency Service has warned people to stay indoors and avoid travelling unless absolutely necessary.
Blizzards likely for Thredbo, Buller, Hotham and Falls Creek
Victoria's ski resorts, which have been experiencing lacklustre snowfalls so far this season, are expecting the winter storm to bring welcome snow to bolster low base levels.
Mount Baw Baw, Mount Buller, Mount Hotham and Falls Creek may experience gusts of up to 120kph until Friday morning.
Great Alpine Road has been closed between Harrietville and Mount Hotham due to heavy snow.
Blizzards are also likely for alpine areas in New South Wales including Thredbo.
The NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service has recommended back country travel be postponed until conditions improve.