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Residents in Australia's NSW warned for flood evacuations

Sydney, Nov 15 (IANS) Residents in parts of Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) have been warned by local emergency services to prepare to evacuate, as heavy rainfall has caused rising water levels.

The floods could displace more than 8,000 people in the rural town of Forbes, about 380 km west of Sydney, and located along the banks of the Lachlan River, which runs through central NSW, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) has predicted that water levels could rise as high as 10.65 meters, slightly higher than the previous major flood event in the area in 2016.

"The situation is likely to change and it can escalate quickly," said the warning issued by the NSW State Emergency Service (SES) early Monday.

It advised residents to pack their cars with essentials and valuables to reduce evacuation times.

The SES also advised residents to leave the area on Monday to stay with family or friends, or in evacuation centers that would be temporarily set up.

Local residents have teamed up with emergency personnel and volunteers in setting up sandbags to prepare for the floods.

If the situation worsens, NSW SES would issue a flood evacuation order to impacted residents via text message.