SEVERE thunderstorms are likely to cause large hail and damaging winds over the Hunter in the next several hours, the Bureau of Meteorology has warned.
The bureau is due to deliver a warning update at 9.10pm.
The State Emergency Service advises that people should:
* Move cars under cover or away from trees.
* Secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony.
* Keep clear of fallen power lines.
* Unplug computers and appliances.
* Avoid using the phone during the storm.
* Stay indoors away from windows, and keep children and pets indoors.
* For emergency help in floods and storms, ring the SES (NSW and ACT) on 132 500.