Jeff

/Jeff Higgins

About Jeff Higgins

I have had a passion for weather since I was 8 years old. In 2011 I created Higgins Storm Chasing on Facebook which has now grown into a successful meteorology business.
1 12, 2018

Cyclone Formation Alert Coral Sea

Issued 1st December 2018. TROPICAL CYCLONE FORMATION ALERT.  It’s the first day of Summer 2018 and an intense tropical low over the Solomon Islands has a HIGH chance of developing into tropical cyclone Owen!

The system is forecast to track South West towards Queensland. Widespread significant rainfall is forecast by a number of models for Eastern QLD this week.

We issued our first HSC in-house detailed low / cyclone forecast track map for the Coral Sea / QLD yesterday and this has been updated again this morning. To gain access to these forecasts and maps subscribe here > https://higginsstormchasing.com/higgins-storm-chasing-membership/

Existing members login here for the latest details > https://higginsstormchasing.com/login/

29 11, 2018

Tropical Low Likely, Cyclone Possible In Coral Sea

Issued 29th November 2018. A Tropical disturbance is currently located over the Solomon Islands which is forecast to track West to South West towards Queensland while intensifying. Above image: GFS FV3 model track.

 The first tropical system for the season is likely to develop in the North East Coral Sea on Sunday while either tracking West as a tropical low or South West while developing further into a cyclone. 

Model data remains uncertain and divided on the exact track and intensity however this information should become much clearer during Friday or Saturday. 

Central and Northern Queensland is experiencing an extreme heatwave with very dry to drought conditions across most the state. 100 bush fires continue to burn. A tropical system bringing a widespread rain depression across the state is what everyone is hoping for right now. It’s unknown just yet if this will be the one to do so or not. 

Tropical Low and Cyclone forecast maps will be issued for this system on our premium membership website service. Click here to sign up to get early information for cyclones across Queensland this season! 

We are urging all Queenslanders along the East Coast to have a Cyclone kit ready along with an emergency plan in place for this season. It could be shaping up to be a bad one! 

27 11, 2018

Heavy Rain And Storms For Central NSW

Issued 27th November 2018. A low pressure system is forecast to bring heavy rain and storms – some severe to Central and South East NSW on Wednesday. Above image total rainfall from Windy.com

A fast moving hard hitting severe weather system is forecast to impact NSW coastal districts from Taree south to Batemans Bay including Sydney Metro on Wednesday morning. 

Severe thunderstorms and heavy rain with 50 to 100mm and possibly locally higher falls are forecast which could lead to flash flooding.

Strong to damaging winds are also expected to develop along the coast and adjacent inland areas. 

Conditions should ease quickly during Wednesday night as the low moves East away from the coast. Below image: Strongest winds during Wednesday via Windy.com

Detailed daily rainfall and thunderstorms maps available via our subscription service > Higgins Storm Chasing Premium Membership Weather Service

27 11, 2018

This Could Become A Coral Sea Cyclone?

Issued 27th November 2018. A Tropical Low or Cyclone is forecast to develop by various global models next week in the Coral Sea. If it does it will become the first cyclone to develop in Australia for the 2018-19 season. Above image via Windy.com

Before anyone jumps to any conclusions we will make it VERY clear that there is a lot of uncertainty with forecast data right now. What we are saying there is POTENTIAL for a system to develop during next week in the Coral Sea off the QLD coast.

About 5 global models including BOM’s own Access G have a tropical low or cyclone developing as early as Sunday in the North East Coral Sea. Many of them have the system intensifying and heading West to South West towards QLD. After that it becomes completely uncertain as to further developments and track.

This is a heads up post informing people of the potential and that we are keeping a very close eye on ALL global data. 

Stay tuned for further updates and forecast in coming days. We offer detailed Tropical Low and Cyclone forecasts and maps via our subscription service. If you want our quality reliable cyclone information sign up here! 

27 11, 2018

Knife Edge Forecast For CQLD, SEQLD & NENSW

Issued 27th November 2018. The balance between the Central Coast and South East Coast of QLD including far North East NSW getting severe and potentially dangerous storms on Wednesday is balancing on a knife edge! Above image showing EXTREME CAPE (very severe storm energy levels) along the coast via BSCH.

Initially on Sunday and Monday global forecast data was suggesting a very dangerous storm set up from Rockhampton south to Coffs Harbour however this has changed somewhat but still remains highly uncertain… 

A 995hpa deep low is expected to track South East across Northern and Central NSW during Wednesday while extending a very strong surface trough up into Southern, South East and Central QLD districts. This trough will mark a sharp boundary between moist strong Northerlies ahead which turn very strong dry and gusty Westerlies behind it. 

Ahead of the trough strong instability is forecast however the EXACT timing and position is absolutey critical to severe thunderstorm forecasts and development. No matter which global model we refer to now they all differ ever so slightly, however, MOST suggest that severe storm activity will start right on the coastal edge and move offshore during the morning to lunch time on Wednesday. 

The extreme forecast difference can come down to either 100km onshore or offshore with people being impacted… Initially we issued a worst case scenario forecast however we now believe the confidence in this has dropped to around 25%. We are damned either way we forecast so we have chosen the conservative approach and will leave the rest down to very close live observations on Wednesday with warnings being quickly issued if required.

Central and Southern inland QLD and Northern inland NSW should expect some showers or isolated storms during the morning which could contain damaging winds while moving quickly East. Then very dry gusty Westerly winds develop with areas of dust. This dust may also reach the coast on Wednesday afternoon. 

Along the Central and Southern QLD coast including the North East NSW coast we do expect a band of showers and isolated storms early Wednesday morning which MAY or MAY NOT rapidly develop as they cross the coast at around lunch time. 

The best that we can suggest is to keep a very close eye on the weather situation during Wednesday.

HSC premium members maps and forecast have been updated to reflect the above scenario. Subscription is available HERE!
Below image showing the strong gusty Westerly winds behind the trough on Wednesday via Windy.com

23 11, 2018

A Week Of VERY Hot Weather For CQLD & NQLD

Issued 23rd November 2018. Large parts of Central and Northern Queensland including coastal districts are facing a week of extreme heat starting this Sunday. Inland areas will reach 43C while coastal locations will be in the high 30’s with high humidity levels. Above image via BSCH maximum temps on Sunday.

 A series of low pressure systems are forecast to move across Southern parts of QLD next week which will cause a Western to South West wind flow across the state. These winds push a very hot dry airmass from Central inland Australia across to the Central and Northern coasts.

A prolonged and extreme heatwave is forecast by the BOM due to temperatures being up to 10C above average for 6 days. Below image: 3 day heatwave via BOM.

Long standing temperature records are likely to fall with the hottest ever days ever in recorded history for November being forecast for many locations.

At this stage the highest heat will be North from about Gladstone, Emerald, Longreach to Mt Isa. Inland areas will have very dry heat over 40C with relative humidity levels below 20% however this will also significantly raise the fire dangers to Severe. 

Coastal parts will feel like a sauna! With forecast tops of 36 to 37C in Cairns, Townsville and Mackay and a relative humidity of 50%, the “feels like” temperatures will exceed 40C and could reach 45C. It going to be a knife edge balancing act of wind direction along the coast with a definitive boundary between very hot Westerlies and very warm humid North Easterlies or Sea Breezes.

Is this a health risk? Yes indeed it is… people bodies become accustomed to our hot climate however when a heatwave of this magnitude and length hits even the most fittest and heaviest people can suffer heat related stress illness.  

Infants, elderly, pregnant women, and people who work outside will be at risk of heat exhaustion and stress. 

Pets and Wildlife will also come under heat stress so please consider offering extra shade and ample water.

Remember this is NOT normal for November, its something that would be more likely to occur during mid Summer. Yes it gets hot and yes it’s our job to let you know 🙂

Stay safe and be prepared everyone. Below image: Fire Dangers for Sunday.

 

22 11, 2018

Dust Storm Alert NSW and QLD

***DUST STORM ALERT NSW & QLD*** 22/11/18

 

6:30PM NSW / SOUTHERN QLD DUST & VIC / SOUTHERN NSW SNOW UPDATE:

Dust: Visible satellite imagery is continuing to detect raised dust and a dust storm to be situated between Charleville and Newcastle / Port Macquarie moving East. Areas such as St George, Goondiwindi, Inverell, Moree, Armidale, Port Macquarie, Newcastle, Taree, Tamworth and surrounds are in the thick of it. Another area of raised dust is being detected over Northern and North West NSW and impacting areas such as Bourke, Nyngan, Cobar, White Cliffs and surrounds moving East to North East on the top side of the low which is further South.
Snow: A low pressure system is located over Eastern VIC moving East still. This low is producing snow down to 1000m over VIC and 1100-1200m over Southern NSW which could end up including the Brindabella Ranges in the ACT overnight tonight as well. Isolated hailstorms are developing around the low through Southern NSW and Central / Eastern VIC with some hail showers also likely through these areas too.

Image: Weatherzone


2:15PM NSW / SOUTHERN QLD DUST & VIC / SOUTHERN NSW SNOW UPDATE.

 

Dust: Visible satellite imagery is detecting a dust storm and raised dust across Southern Inland QLD, Northern Inland NSW and through the Hunter and NSW Central Coast. This dust is moving East and staying Inland across Northern NSW and Southern Inland QLD for now. Areas of the Mid North Coast and Northern Tablelands may start to experience air quality deteriorating over the next few hours as the dust arrives.

Snow: The centre of a very visible low pressure system is located West of the Victorian Alpine region near Shepparton. This low is moving East across Victoria and South East NSW. Areas within the blue circle are likely to see snow continue for the remainder of the day down to 1000m across VIC and 1100m across Southern NSW. Areas lower than that aren’t expected to see snow, but could see hail showers as isolated storms are likely to develop during the afternoon and evening along with intense showers tapping into the freezing air just above the surface.

Image: Weatherzone



 

10:20AM NSW UPDATE: 

• A dust storm has been detected on visible satellite stretching from Cunnamulla, QLD to Wollongong, NSW.

• The thickest dust is currently located through Gilgandra, Walgett and Cunnamulla. This dust storm is moving towards the East and North East.

• Areas South from Port Macquarie are likely to experience a dust haze during the day.

• Areas through inland NSW from Gunnedah, Tamworth, Armidale, Naribri, Moree, Inverell and into QLD from Goondiwindi, St George to Charleville are likely to experience a thicker dust haze. Further towns may be included during the day as we track the dust towards the East.

• At this stage the dust is lasting around 6hrs for each location as it passes through. All dust is expected to be cleared land areas by Friday.

Cover image via Weatherzone 
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19 11, 2018

A Huge Dust Storm Could Hit NSW

Issued 19th November 2018. A huge dust storm has the potential of developing across large parts of NSW on Thursday including through Sydney metro and most coastal districts. Above image: Surface wind gusts up to 90km hr across the state with dust storm potential circled. Base image via Windy.com

The skies across large parts of NSW may have the sun blocked out by a reddish brown thick dust on Thursday causing health concerns and transport disruptions. 

A powerful deep low pressure system is forecast to cross Southern parts of the state on Thursday with very strong to near damaging Westerly winds across large parts of the state. These powerful winds begin through far Western districts late on Wednesday afternoon where a huge dust storm could form near Broken Hill and Mildura. Then on Thursday morning a second wave of very strong Westerly winds develop and quickly spread East towards coastal districts.

Any dust that is lifted up on Wednesday night could be added to with a higher thickness level on Thursday then advance right across the state. We could be looking at a dust storm similar to the one in September 2009 which blacked out areas from Sydney, NSW to the Gold Coast in QLD.

All the ingredients are there for a similar event with widespread drought conditions, exposed dusty ground that has very little vegetation cover. Then we have the 24hrs worth of incredibly strong winds and very little rainfall. 

With the latest satellite technology that includes 10 minute updates, any dust storm that develops during visible daylight hours will easily be able to be tracked and warned for. Below image: Jet stream winds across NSW on Thursday with the deep low over Southern NSW and Victoria via BSCH. 

During periods of thick dust most transport services can be disrupted due to low visibility. Work sites can be shut down due to safety concerns. 
Visibility deteriorates very quickly during a dust storm. If you are on the road and your ability to drive safely is impaired by poor visibility, reduce your speed. Be prepared to pull off the road if visibility deteriorates to less than 100m. If your car is air-conditioned, reduce the amount of dust entering your car by switching the air intake to ‘recirculate’.

The most common symptoms experienced during a dust storm are irritation to the eyes and upper airways. People who may be more vulnerable than others are:

  • infants, children and adolescents

  • the elderly

  • people with respiratory conditions, such as asthma, bronchitis and emphysema

  • people with heart disease

  • people with diabetes.

The following precautions can help you protect yourself and minimise the adverse effects of a dust storm:

  • Avoid outdoor activity. If you must go outside, spend as little time outside as possible.

  • Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or damp cloth to reduce exposure to dust particles. A P2 or P3 mask, available from hardware stores, should block even the finest particles if fitted correctly over the nose and mouth.

  • Avoid vigorous exercise, especially if you have asthma, diabetes or a breathing-related condition.

  • Stay indoors, with windows and doors closed.

  • Stay in air-conditioned premises, if possible.

19 11, 2018

November Snow & Severe Storms For Victoria

Issued 19th November 2018. An Antarctic Low is forecast to hit Victoria on Thursday this week bringing very cold conditions with snow down to 1000 meters across the state. Severe storms are also likely on Tuesday. Above image: Cold polar airmass on Thursday via BSCH. HSC offers detailed daily snow, storms and rain forecast maps across Victoria HERE

The first round of severe weather is expected on Tuesday due to a strong trough system moving through from the West. This trough is forecast to bring a band of storms across the state including through the greater Melbourne area with some likely to be severe. Due to high turning winds a tornado can’t be ruled out through Central and Northern districts. Most storms will contain strong to damaging winds, heavy rain and some hail. 

A big cold cored deep low is forecast to reach Western Victoria late on Wednesday while pushing a band of rain, showers and isolated storms across the state. 

On Thursday morning conditions will deteriorate as the low moves across the state. Snow is expected to fall down to 1000 meters with up to 20cm on the Alps. Showers with lots of small hail are also forecast. Strong to damaging cold South West winds will develop on the Western side of the low and spread across the state during Thursday. 

Temperatures are expected to plummet across Victoria with a forecast top of just 15C in Melbourne and 1C on the Alps. The wind chill factor could easily take up to 10C off these forecast maximums.  Below image: Snow forecast this week via Windy.com

19 11, 2018

Antarctic Low To Hit SA With Severe Weather

Issued 19th November 2018. A Winter like Antarctic Low is forecast to smash Southern and South East parts of South Australia this week including Adelaide with massive swells, damaging winds and very cold wet conditions. Above image: Antarctic cold low on Wednesday via BSCH.

Widespread storms are forecast to develop across the state on Monday before shifting into the Northern half of the state on Tuesday due to a trough. Some storms are likely to be severe on Monday with damaging winds through the Western half. On Tuesday heavy rain and damaging winds are also likely across large parts of the Northern half. This will just be the start of things to come…

On Wednesday a very deep low pressure system will approach the state from the Bight and cross the far South East during Wednesday night.

The system is forecast to produce widespread strong to damaging winds up to 120km hr across Southern and South East districts including Adelaide during Wednesday. These winds are also forecast to whip up huge waves to 7 meters in open waters and around 4 meters along the Southern coast. Below image: Huge waves and swell during Wednesday via Windy.com

Thunderstorms with hail are forecast for Adelaide with activity likely to spread across the South East quarter of the state as the low passes through.

Very cold maximum temperatures are forecast on Wednesday and Thursday as the polar airmass surges up from the South West. Adelaide is going for a top of just 18C which is half of what it was on Monday. The lowest maximum temperature recorded in Adelaide during November since 1839 is 13.4C which could be challenged! 

Widespread rainfall totals of 10 to 20mm are forecast from the system across the state this week. Isolated high totals will be possible around Adelaide, Mt Lofty Ranges and through the Northern half under storms. Below image: Widespread damaging winds on Wednesday via Windy.com