Melbourne and Victoria has been hit with severe thunderstorms.
The airport has been covered with smoke.Source:Supplied
Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport is expected to face more delays today, after the city was covered in thick smoke and a severe thunderstorm lashed parts of the state.
The airport was forced down to a single runway on Wednesday, as heavy bushfire smoke covered the city and impacted visibility.
More than 60 flights were forced to cancel throughout the day, with strong winds also playing havoc on landings and takeoffs.
By late afternoon, a “slow moving severe thunderstorms” moved across central Victoria and metropolitan Melbourne resulting in a reported shutdown of the airport.
“The pilot has told us 40 aircraft are trying to land in Melbourne and there will be no departures from Sydney to Melbourne until at least 6pm,” one passenger told news.com.au.
In a tweet, Melbourne Airport said the combination of smoke and storms was “messing with the schedule” which will likely impact passengers looking to depart from the airport on Thursday.
“Today should be more straightforward, however a number of passengers who weren’t supposed to be in Melbourne are here this morning,” a spokesman told news.com.au.
“So there will be a bit of recovery effort today as airlines re-book passengers, which we will help streamline.”
Melbourne airport said conditions had significantly eased after parts of the state received an “enormous amount of rain” overnight.
“It’s still raining in parts of the city, which is helping with smoke and air quality around the airport today,” the spokesman said.
Virgin Australia said that while around 30 of their flights had been cancelled as a result of weather conditions, there were no big distruptions for passengers early Thursday.
“We are experiencing delays of around 20 to 30 minutes this morning, which is a flow on from yesterday,” the airline told news.com.au.
The storm produced damaging winds, heavy rainfall and large hailstones on Wednesday, however some parts of the state received no rain at all.
“Full horror movie thunder cracks in the northern suburbs,” wrote one man on Twitter.
According to an airport spokesman, most of the impacted flights on Wednesday were from Sydney, Canberra and Launceston after they were forced to close one of their runways.
Despite improving conditions, Melbourne airport says passengers should still remain in contact with their airline throughout the day.
“Our advice is that anyone flying should check in with their airline,” he said
The smoke has impacted several flights in and out of Melbourne airport.Source:Supplied
Earlier this week, Melbourne residents faced hazardous levels for the second day running.
At 9am on Wednesday, the air quality index in Melbourne was clocking in at 347, more than six times worse than the minimum healthy level. A “good” air quality index is under 50.
Forecasting predicts air quality will improve on Thursday, with air pollution levels expected to drop by midmorning.
Several flights have been impacted by the smoke.Source:Twitter
Melbourne is the third major Australian city to be choked by impacted air quality due to smoke from bushfires, with both Sydney and Canberra suffering through some of the worst air pollution in the world.