At least three have been killed and others are missing after severe storms struck Australia’s east coast.

Australia’s Bureau of Meteorology said a wind gust of more than 71 miles per hour was recorded in Sydney Harbour during the storm, while two of the three runways of Sydney airport were closed due to the high winds.

Giant waves were whipped up on Sydney beaches as storms pounded the coast over the weekend, causing flooding in New South Wales.

One part of Sydney suffered its worst flooding in 30 years, while the city’s Observatory Hill weather station received some 226 millimetres of rain over the weekend – well above the average monthly rainfall for June of 131.9mm.

Waves up to 40 feet caused severe coastal erosion, in one instance sweeping away the in-ground swimming pool of a beachside home.

“This storm, which was so ferocious, has taken life from us,” New South Wales premier Mike Baird told the Associated Press as he warned that conditions remained dangerous.

“Up and down the coast this has caused carnage. It is clear – the ferocity of this storm was such that the damage has been unbelievable up and down the coast.”