A FLOOD watch has been issued for the West and South Gippsland weather forecast district, which includes Wellington Shire.
A high pressure system over the southern Tasman Sea will move slowly eastwards on Thursday, while a low pressure system develops off the New South Wales central coast.
The low will deepen and move southwards to be located off the southern NSW coast by Thursday night, before drifting eastwards into the Tasman Sea during Friday.
In the 24 hours to 9am Thursday widespread rainfall totals from 10 to 44 mm had been recorded in the West Gippsland catchments with isolated totals of 85 mm at Mt Wellington and 70 mm at Reeves Knob.
Areas of rain have been forecast for the West Gippsland catchments from Thursday afternoon with locally heavy falls in the east. Rainfall totals of 10 to 50mm have been forecast.
The forecast rainfall is expected to cause stream rises and possible areas of flooding in the West Gippsland catchments from late Thursday into Friday.
The Bureau of Meteorology is monitoring the situation and will issue catchment specific warnings if and when required.
This flood watch means that people living or working along rivers and streams must monitor the latest weather forecasts and warnings and be ready to move to higher ground should flooding develop. Flood warnings will be issued if the minor flood level is expected to be exceeded at key sites along the main rivers for which the Bureau of Meteorology provides a flood warning service.
For emergency assistance contact the SES on 132 500.