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5 09, 2019

Dust Storms Likely For QLD & NSW On Friday

2019-09-05T15:12:43+10:00

Dust storms are likely to impact expansive parts of Northern NSW and Southern QLD during Friday, reaching the Coast on Saturday as a dust haze as a strong surface trough moves through the region creating hot and dry conditions with strong to damaging winds. Above image showing the dust areas overlaid on a wind map for Friday afternoon via Windy.

 

 

A surface trough is expected to be postponed across South West & Southern Inland QLD as well as Northern & Central Inland NSW during Friday morning. As the day progresses, this trough is expected to move East and become situated from the Hunter through the NW Slopes and Plains into Southern & Central Inland QLD. This trough is forecast to generate widespread strong to damaging winds of 60-80km/h likely and 90-100km/h possible across Northern NSW and Southern QLD, with the highest gusts most likely around the Ranges. These winds will be very favourable for widespread dust storms across this area during the day.

 

 

Dust should first kick up across Eastern SA, Far North West VIC, Western NSW and South West QLD during the morning. It should then move through Inland NSW and South West / Southern Inland QLD during the late morning and early afternoon – reaching the (NSW) NW Slopes and Plains, CW Slopes and Plains Northern Tablelands, (QLD) Darling Downs and possibly the Central Highlands areas during the afternoon. Models are also indicating the potential for dry thunderstorms across Inland NSW which would likely be a source for damaging wind gusts of over 90km/h as well as dry microbursts which will exaggerate dust locally. Dust should reach the Coast overnight Friday into Saturday and linger throughout Saturday across Coastal areas (areas East of the Ranges) from Newcastle to Bundaberg. 

 

 

This dust is likely to cause issues for people with breathing problems. For those East of the Ranges, there is every chance the air will be clear for you when you go to bed on Friday night, and then you wake up to intense dust haze on Saturday morning – so its advised to have everything required to cope, already in place and easily accessible. 

This setup, whilst extremely favourable for dust storms, is also extremely favourable for widespread dangerous fire conditions. Extreme to locally catastrophic fire dangers are in place for the North West Slopes and Plains, Darling Downs, Warrego & Maranoa with severe fire danger potential across the (NSW) Hunter, Mid North Coast, Northern Tablelands, North West and (QLD) South East Coast, Wide Bay & Central Highlands. Click for Catastrophic Fire Blog.

Dust Storms Likely For QLD & NSW On Friday2019-09-05T15:12:43+10:00
3 09, 2019

September Heat Increasing Fire Dangers Across QLD

2019-09-03T18:19:09+10:00

Wednesday through to Friday is expected to pose a high fire risk across Southern and Eastern QLD as winds increase and push temperatures to heatwave thresholds for this time of year. Above image forecast maximums for the South East quarter of QLD via BSCH / OCF showing maximums into the mid 30’s across the region.

 

A local fire ban has been issued for the Ipswich, Somerset, Lockyer Valley, Scenic Rim, Logan and Gold Coast Council regions ahead of hot, dry and windy conditions from Wednesday though to Friday night. Further fire bans are possible across the Wide Bay and Darling Downs districts as well. Temperatures are expected to exceed heatwave thresholds of 4-5ºc+ above average for 3 straight days during this period and combine with dry winds of 50-80km/h.

During Wednesday, a high pressure region is expected to become situated over Central Eastern QLD which will combine with a coastal trough across South East parts of the State. This will lead to increased North Westerly winds over Inland areas and strong South Westerly winds across the South East corner of the State. These dry, strong winds will provide idealistic conditions for severe fire danger potential across the region as temperatures reach around 6-8ºc above average for this time of year. 

Forecast temperatures via OCF / BSCH and Fire Danger Rating via QFES / BOM for Wednesday

 

During Thursday, winds will ease across South East areas but increase across Western districts as a North Westerly flow becomes dominant. These hotter winds will increase the temperatures further where we are likely to see many Inland areas – especially South West, Southern & Central areas reaching the mid 30’s. Temperatures across the South East will remain in the low to mid 30’s and the overall heat will keep fire dangers elevated.

Forecast temperatures via OCF / BSCH and Fire Danger Rating via QFES / BOM for Thursday

 

 

On Friday, a strong South West change is expected to move through Inland areas – the timing of this will be vital as to where it gets hot and where it doesn’t. The South East corner of the State is expected to push into the mid 30’s for many areas and this combined with strong winds of 50-70km/h will re-increase the fire danger back to severe thresholds and possibly even higher once confidence grows in this forecast. Strong winds of 60km/h+ are also expected over the Darling Downs , Wide Bay and Warrego districts where temperatures will range in the low to mid 30’s and leading to severe fire danger potential as well. Cooler conditions are likely over the South West and West, but hot conditions are likely elsewhere. 

Forecast temperatures via OCF / BSCH and Fire Danger Rating via QFES / BOM for Friday

 

September Heat Increasing Fire Dangers Across QLD2019-09-03T18:19:09+10:00
2 09, 2019

Hurricane Dorian: Will It Make The Turn???

2019-09-02T19:25:45+10:00

For several days leading up to this point, models have been adamant that Dorian will come roaring into the Bahamas as a category 4 or 5 system before slowing, stalling, stopping and then veering more Northwards. This scenario was a worst case scenario for the Bahamas but it was also the best case scenario for the Eastern seaboard of the United States and especially Florida as it meant the system remained offshore and ‘harmless’ to those areas. 

 

Either way, this will be a defining moment for tropical history in the United States. There are 2 ways this can go and either way becomes unique in its own right.

Option A: The ridging pattern over Florida and the Gulf of Mexico holds. Dorian stalls over Grand Bahama for around 12-24 hours further before veering Northwards. A high over North East USA will continue Eastwards and Northwards and this will allow room for Dorian to move North along the ridge to the West. It will either be severely weakened as it encounters cooler waters and stronger vertical wind shear and this process will mean it comes ashore as a weakened hurricane over North Carolina or misses everyone altogether – recurving back out to sea and becoming a fish hurricane once again. While this scenario seems most likely out of the 2 given model agreement and forecasting data available.. it would also defy the odds somewhat as very few, if any, category 4 or 5 hurricanes have ever made the turn to the North – they all seem to power through in a straight line. 

Global ensemble showing the most likely track based off CURRENT available data via Tropicaltidbits. Each line is a different model – the closer they are, the greater the confidence.

 

Forecast track map as of 2am Monday US EDT via the National Hurricane Center.

 

 

Option B: Dorian remains powerful enough that it bends the ridge back Westwards over Florida or even pushes through it – we don’t normally see this happening as it takes an extremely strong system to not be phased by the unfavourable conditions created by the ridge. This would mean that the system powers straight into Florida as a high-end category 4 or possibly category 5 strength system and becomes one of the most powerful hurricanes to make landfall over Mainland USA in history. This would not only become a life threatening situation for anyone within 100 miles of the system as it produces an extremely dangerous storm surge, very destructive winds which will likely cause significant tree and power damage along with significant damage to well structured buildings, along with flooding rain… but it would also become a life threatening situation for those further North, as the system would then use the land as a guideline to move North and North East across the rest of Florida, into Georgia and the Carolina’s as the system would be weakened by land interaction and the ride the ridge as per Option A (just further West).

Forecast Rainfall for Hurricane Dorian based off the latest data via the National Hurricane Center.

 

Hurricane Dorian: Will It Make The Turn???2019-09-02T19:25:45+10:00
2 09, 2019

Record-Breaking Hurricane Dorian Devastates The Bahamas

2019-09-02T06:15:59+10:00

Hurricane Dorian has entered the record books in a devastating way as it reached high-end Category 5 strength during Sunday (US time) prior to directly hitting the Northern and North West Bahamas. Above image shows colour satellite as the system was upgraded to Category 5 strength. Above image showing colour and high detail satellite imagery via the National Weather Service.

 

The Bahamas have been dealt the harshest of blows as Hurricane Dorian underwent rapid intensification during early Sunday (US time). The system was already a high-end category 4 system entering Sunday with sustained winds of 150mph. However, in a very favourable environment of low vertical wind shear and warm to very warm sea surface temperatures nudging 30ºc – the system was able to significantly intensify into a full blown, high-end category 5 strength hurricane only hours before hitting the Abaco Island group as part of the Bahamas. 

While its only early in the piece of this monster, we have already seen reports and vision of complete and utter destruction out of Abaco Island including Marsh Harbour with a life threatening storm surge of 18-23 feet (6-8 metres) which is swallowing the land like a wall of water. On top of that there is immense wind destruction with powerlines down, enter buildings destroyed, cars pulverised and so on. There have been reports from people walking around in the eye of the system as it passed, where they could hear people screaming from houses for help. This is NEVER a good sign in these circumstances. 

Dorian directly over the Abaco Islands as a high-end Category 5 system with winds of 185mph. Image via Tropicaltidbits / GOES / NOAA

 

 

Some stats from Dorian and its phenomenal record breaking run.
• Category 5 – the first time in US history that 3 consecutive years have seen a Category 5 system make landfall (Maria / Irma 2017, Michael 2018 – that was also the first time ever that back to back years had a Category 5 landfall)
• Dorian has made it the first time ever that there have been 4 consecutive years with a Category 5 in the Atlantic (the above 3 + Matthew in 2016) 
• Sustained winds of 185mph and wind gusts to 220mph
Tied-second strongest hurricane in the Atlantic basin behind Hurricane Allen in 1980 (190mph)
Strongest hurricane to ever impact the Northern and North West Bahamas
Strongest hurricane to make landfall over the United States region since the Labor Day hurricane of 1935 (ironically its Labor Day today again).
• Officially 911mb, however there have been storm chasers record as low as 906mb – if this is verified (which it should be) then Dorian will have recorded the 9th lowest pressure reading from the Atlantic Basin – lower than Hurricane Maria from 2017, slightly higher than Mitch (1998) and Dean (2007). 
• If that pressure is verified, then it will also be the outright 5th lowest pressure reading for a landfall in the Atlantic Basin (currently tied in 5th with the Cuba hurricane of 1924). 
• A small side note too, Dorian was the first system that the Hurricane Hunters intercepted with an all-female main crew.

Some very direct posts from the National Hurricane Center about Dorian breaking records

 

 

What is scary, is that Dorian isn’t done with yet. The system is expected to become extremely slow moving over the Northern and North West Bahamas as a category 5 strength system with winds well over 160mph sustained. Dorian is expected to veer North at some stage over the next 36-48 hours, however the timing of that shift North will be either fantastic or detrimental to the outlook for not just Florida but North & South Carolina too (timing is everything with this system).

 

Record-Breaking Hurricane Dorian Devastates The Bahamas2019-09-02T06:15:59+10:00
1 09, 2019

Hurricane Dorian: Life Threatening Situation For Bahamas

2019-09-01T13:54:37+10:00

A life threatening situation is becoming increasingly likely across the Northern Bahamas as Dorian, an incredibly powerful and dangerous hurricane, looks like to make a direct impact and stall over the region. Above image via GOES / NOAA.

 

High resolution satellite imagery showing Dorian nearing the Bahamas. Image via RAMMB / CIRA

 

Its a worst case scenario situation for the Northern Bahamas which includes Grand Bahamas Island, Aboca Island, Moore’s Island and Grand Cay as well as many other very small islands surrounding these main ones. Hurricane Dorian is a very powerful, very dangerous high-end Category 4 hurricane (almost Category 5 strength) – to put that into perspective, its well and truly above Category 5 thresholds for Australian standards. The system is forecast to move directly over the Northern reaches of the Bahamas which includes the aforementioned Islands during Sunday (overnight Sunday into Monday Australian time) and produce very dangerous, life threatening conditions… what makes it worse is that models are all on board for the the system to stall directly over the region, pumping them for 2 days straight!

The good news for Eastern US people is that models are continuing to trend the system Eastwards where if Dorian doesn’t make landfall over North Carolina then it may not make landfall over the United States mainland at all. This has been a drastic change given only a few days ago, models were indicating a song impact on the Florida East Coast. 

Forecast global ensemble of tracks for Dorian via Tropicaltidbits

 

So how did this come about?
Originally, models were anticipating a weak ridge to the West of Florida over the Gulf of Mexico with a strong high pressure region over North East USA (New York and surrounds). This combination meant that Dorian was going to struggle to move Northwards and in fact would likely move due West across the Bahamas and into Florida. The ridge over the Gulf of Mexico has since strengthened and moved East further than anticipated whilst the high over North East USA has shifted a little further North and weakened – this has lead to Dorian likely struggling to push West and instead veer more North West and then North before recurving back towards the North East as it interacts with the 2 systems. 

 

Whilst that is good news for people over Eastern USA (maybe not for North Carolina yet, but for everyone else it is… and even if it gets to North Carolina, it will likely be much weaker by then anyway). The recurve has been forecast for a number of days to occur directly over the Bahamas. The system is expected to start impacting the area during Sunday and may not ease until late Tuesday. This scenario means that while Dorian is at peak strength (near Category 5), it will be pumping the Northern Bahamas with very destructive winds which will undoubtedly cause power and communication failures, cause significant damage to well structured buildings and deforest large areas of bushland. Relentless torrential rain is also likely to occur with areas of 400-600mm likely to occur and localised falls of up to 1000mm being forecast on multiple models. An extremely dangerous storm surge is also expected across most Islands due to their vulnerable nature. All of these threats are likely to pose a significant risk to human and animal life! 

The European (ECMWF) and North American (NAM) rainfall forecasts for Dorian showing 500mm+ (blue) and 1000mm+ (light blue) across the Northern Bahamas. Images via Windy

 

Hurricane Dorian: Life Threatening Situation For Bahamas2019-09-01T13:54:37+10:00
1 09, 2019

Unseasonable Heat Hitting QLD This Week

2019-09-01T13:15:19+10:00

Queensland is about to get an early taste of the warm season with unseasonable heat surging across the State during the next week, peaking on Thursday where high fire dangers are likely. Above image: Maximums across QLD during Thursday via BSCH.

 

 

NB: This has NOTHING to do with the Sudden Stratospheric Warming. As stated in that blog located HERE –  we won’t feel any effects from late until Mid September at the earliest, and thats if that event even reaches Queensland or Australia for that matter.

A low moving high pressure system is expected to move North East across South Australia, New South Wales and become situated over Southern QLD during Monday and Tuesday. This system will extend a ridge across the entire State leading to widespread DRY and HOT conditions apart from Coastal areas from St Lawrence to Weipa where near normal maximums are expected.

 

Forecast maximums across Queensland during Monday. Image via BSCH / OCF

 

Temperatures are forecast to peak during Wednesday, Thursday and Friday when winds start to veer more North to North Westerly across the State. This will direct increased heating across the entirety of Inland QLD as well as South Eastern districts and subsequently spread across the border into Northern parts of NSW. Despite a dramatic increase in daytime maximums occurring – clear skies and light winds from Monday to Wednesday will allow for cool mornings across Southern and South East QLD where morning frost is possible across the Darling Downs and Granite Belt – these minimums should gradually rise but only to around normal for September standards. 

 

Forecast maximums across South East QLD and North East NSW during Thursday. Image via BSCH / OCF

 

 

During Monday to Friday, maximums are expected to range around 6-10ºc above average for Inland QLD and South East areas, with locally higher anomalies possible. While this run of heat isn’t expected to break any records, that doesn’t make it normal either. Parts of the South East are expected to peak on Thursday with maximums around 35-36ºc, while Inland areas could see multiple days in the mid to possibly even high 30’s. During Thursday, winds are expected to dramatically increase across Southern, Central and South East QLD which will combine with high temperatures and low humidity to produce a dramatic increase in fire danger ratings.

 

During Saturday, a cool change is expected to enter Inland QLD and this will allow for some cooling across the region, although maximums may still remain slightly above average due to how far above average they are during the week. This system is expected to reach Coastal areas until Sunday, so above average heat is still likely to occur across Eastern regions during Saturday.

Forecast maximums across Queensland during Saturday sowing cooler conditions across Inland areas and hot conditions remaining over the East. Image via BSCH / OCF

 

Unseasonable Heat Hitting QLD This Week2019-09-01T13:15:19+10:00
31 08, 2019

Life Threatening Threat For Bahamas From Hurricane Dorian

2019-08-31T18:20:25+10:00

Major Hurricane Dorian is expected to threaten the Bahamas during Sunday and Monday with potentially life threatening conditions depending solely around where the system tracks. There is the potential for not only immense destruction but life threatening ramifications based off some of the latest data. Above image currently satellite imagery via RAMMB / CIRA with the purple cone showing where Dorian is likely to track.

 

All of the focus has been over the United States and what Dorian could do to Florida… however the system is expected to move across the almost forgotten Bahamas before it even starts to arrive in Florida. The latest data has Dorian as a mid range Category 4 strength system with sustained winds of 140mph (225km/h) and much higher gusts (potentially reaching 300km/h) likely – this is the equivalent of a Category 5 system in Australia. Dorian is forecast to continue to move through an environment that has sea surface temperatures of around 29-30ºc and low vertical wind shear. This will allow the system to continue to intensify slowly, after going through a very rapid intensification process over the past 12 hours or so where it dropped 22mb and increased from a Category 2 to mid range 4 system.

Latest National Hurricane Center forecast track map for Dorian placing the Bahamas under a dangerous threat.

 

During this time, Dorian is expected to peak at around 150-155mph sustained winds (Category 5 is 157mph) and it may reach Category 5 strength if it exceeds expectations (which it has so far to this point). As Dorian starts to peak as a high end Category 4 or possible Category 5 system, its expected to either move directly over the Northern Bahamas or just North / East of them. The good news is, the system is quite small in overall size, so the destructive core is quite confined – the bad news is, many models have a direct hit for the Bahamas and have so for a few days.

Global forecast track consensus by Tropicaltidbits showing Dorian either directly hitting or narrowly missing to the North of the Bahamas.

 

We HOPE that the system does miss. But if it was to directly hit the Islands of Grand Bahamas, Abaco Islands, Moore’s Island, Grand Cay and potentially Harbour Island… then the intensity of the system will be strong enough to cause significant structural destruction where well structured buildings may suffer completely destruction. Widespread complete loss of power and communications. Significant tree deforestation. Torrential rainfall will also pose a significant threat to flash flooding which may pose a threat to human life as well. A very dangerous and life threatening storm surge is also forecast. We can only hope for the best in this situation, but we need to respect the potential too as we have seen in previous years over Puerto Rico.

We will post in the future about Florida, but off the latest data – Dorian may not even hit Florida anymore, so the respect and focus NEEDS to switch to the Bahamas. 

ECMWF Forecast for Monday afternoon showing Dorian directly over Grand Bahamas / Freeport (this is only 1 model possibility). Image via Windy.

 

Life Threatening Threat For Bahamas From Hurricane Dorian2019-08-31T18:20:25+10:00
30 08, 2019

Hurricane Dorian Poses A Big Threat To Florida!

2019-08-30T15:49:30+10:00

Hurricane Dorian is expected to undergo strong to rapid intensification over then ext 48 hours or so as it moves towards the Florida Coast where a landfall seems highly likely now on Monday. Above image – simulated satellite imagery via the HWRF model (tropicaltidbits) prior to landfall showing near perfect hurricane characteristics.

 

Its been one of the slowest starts to the hurricane season in the United States and Atlantic basin for over 30 years. As the saying goes though, even the slowest of years need to be respected… it only takes 1 to cause havoc. Normally by this stage of the season we would be looking at I, J or K on the alphabet for the next name. D is much earlier than that. So far, Andrea, Chantal and Erin have all failed to reach hurricane strength, Barry was a Category 1 for about 3 hours. Dorian has already surpassed that and heading for major (Category 3+ strength).

Dorian began in the Atlantic Ocean where he drifted West to North Westwards. Original modelling had it posing a threat as a possible hurricane for the Dominican Republic. This outlook changed and it became a 50/50 hurricane chance for Puerto Rico which is still cleaning up following Maria 2 years ago. The system missed Puerto Rico to the East whilst maintaining Category 1 hurricane strength. This shift to the East was influenced by a ridging pattern to the West over the Gulf of Mexico which strengthened.

The current storms during the 2019 US Atlantic Hurricane Season.

 

 

The system is now moving in a North Westerly direction towards the Bahamas. As it interacts with a ridge to the West which is forecast to weaken and a strengthening high pressure region over North East America, its expected that Dorian will veer towards the West and place a direct impact on the Bahamas before strengthening further into a Category 4 system (or a low chance of becoming a Category 5 system) before crossing the Florida Coast on Monday (US time). 

National Hurricane Center Forecast tracking of Hurricane Dorian

 

 

Models are very confident on the system being a Category 4 on landfall. The European Model and HMON support this with sustained winds of around 220km/h (this has been mimicked by the National Hurricane Center). The HWRF model is being far more aggressive with winds of up to 350km/h making the system a full blown Category 5 – while this is a strong outlier, it still needs some level of respect given its level of accuracy in years gone by. Conditions also cant rule out such aggressive intensification either as low wind shear and strong sea surface temperatures allow for this. Anywhere from Melbourne to Miami is under threat for a landfall with all models showing slight differences in the final positioning. While most models place Miami out of the threat, it still needs to be monitored given the high population living and holidaying there during the long weekend. 

The system is expected to remain quite small in overall size, this will help contain the most destructive core. Very destructive winds capable of major structural failure and destruction is expected in the inner most core. Damaging winds should expand quite a distance from the system but they will drop off quite quickly. Heavy flooding rain is expected as well with falls of 500mm+ being possible. The overall flooding should be fairly limited though as the region in question is built to withstand monsoonal impacts. 

Forecast 10 day rainfall across Southern Florida via Windy

 

Hurricane Dorian Poses A Big Threat To Florida!2019-08-30T15:49:30+10:00
29 08, 2019

Sudden Stratospheric Warming: What It Means For Australia

2019-08-29T17:25:51+10:00

A ‘Sudden Stratospheric Warming’ is set to take place mid September across Antarctica with its effects potentially being felt across Australia and New Zealand. This event has the potential to be unprecedented for the Southern hemisphere due to its abnormal / rare occurrence and its potential strength which models are showing already. Above image showing the SSW (Sudden Stratospheric Warming) over Antractica via Weatherzone.

 

 

Okay. So a Sudden Stratospheric Warming event is set to take place. Models are pretty keen and confident on this occurring. Before you dismiss it as a load of nonsense, we need to understand exactly what it is and then maybe we can have a better understanding about how it effects us. You can be forgiven for being naive about it as these kinds of events aren’t that common in the Southern Hemisphere, with the only reliable data really only coming out of the Northern Hemisphere and UK more specifically. 

 

 

So what is a ‘Sudden Stratospheric Warming’?
A Sudden Stratospheric Warming is when the temperature between 10km (30,000ft) and 50km (150,000ft) in the Stratosphere undergoes rapid warming (in the vicinity of at least 50ºc in the space of just a few days). The warming occurs so high up in the atmosphere that we are completely oblivious to it at the surface. 

But how can it warm so quickly? 
Every year, strong Westerly winds will circulate around the Antarctic (or Arctic). These winds form what we know as the stratospheric polar vortex which occurs high above the poles and produces excessive amounts of cold air. In some instances though, these winds will weaken for a period of time – more commonly between the changing of seasons into Winter and out of Winter when the atmosphere itself is changing. As these winds weaken, they can sometimes reverse and move from East to West instead. This causes the colder air to descend in the polar vortex and the air replacing it above is much warmer – which leads to a rapid warming and thus a Sudden Stratospheric Warming. As the cold air sinks towards the surface, it causes our weather at the surface it begins to change the pattern of the jet stream and this can alter the weather at the surface in a cold fashion.

 

How does it affect our weather?
There aren’t too many cases that have been heavily documented and so the overall understanding is limited. There are some things we do know, and forgive us for using the Northern Hemisphere as the example, as there is next to no concrete data on any events in the Southern Hemisphere (given there have only ever been 2 events in recorded history – September 2002 and 2010), but we can assume some things based on the Northern Hemisphere.

There have been cases in the Northern Hemisphere (more so the United Kingdom) in recent history, from 2009-10, 2013 and what was dubbed ‘the beast from the East’ in 2018. 

As the jet stream snakes more in its shape, it has tended to create large areas of blocking high pressure. In the Northern Hemisphere, these high pressure regions have typically developed over the Northern Atlantic Ocean and Scandinavia. What this has meant, is the area in between – the United Kingdom – has had extensive periods of dry, very cold (often icy) weather. In other words, those typical conditions where its a blue sky but so cold that its like the morning frost cant melt. Southern Europe during this same time, was slightly milder but also very wet and windy. The boundary between the large area of prolonged dry and wet and windy (between the United Kingdom and Southern Europe) has lead to extremely snowy conditions. The effects of these events at the surface may only begin to appear weeks after the event started 50km above the surface, so while its already underway now over Antarctica – we may see nothing until mid September. 

How can we translate this to Australia and New Zealand – well we cant really as we don’t know where the 2 blocking high pressure systems will be and where the ‘in between’ will be. What we can assume though, is there will be 2 large area of high pressure, in between them will be an area of very icy, cold, dry conditions. North of that will be an area of very wet and windy conditions, and in between will be very snowy – whether that actually happens over Australia or South of Australia will be a wait and see game, but given we are closer to the Equator than the United Kingdom, chances are our impacts will be less than theirs during the 2018 ‘Beast from the East’ event. 

 

St Marks Square, Venice – during the Beast from the East in February 2018. Image: Lumina Film Bauer Palace via AP

 

The Coliseum in Rome, white for the first time in years during the ‘Beast from the East’. Image via EPA

 

Sudden Stratospheric Warming: What It Means For Australia2019-08-29T17:25:51+10:00
29 08, 2019

Extensive Heatwave to Impact QLD

2019-08-29T12:26:57+10:00

It may not be Summer yet… but heatwave conditions are expected to cover the majority of QLD starting Sunday and lasting until at least Thursday, with some models going until next Saturday. Above image – Maximums on Thursday via OCF / BSCH.

 

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Other States will be impacted too however this is a Queensland specific blog for now.
A large, slow moving, high pressure system is forecast to move across the State during the weekend and next week. This high will push dry winds across the entire State whilst introducing a warming air mass to the region as well. This combination will allow for overnight minimums to remain quite cool originally before slowly warming up – this may even lead to some frost across the Granite Belt, Darling Downs and Southern Inland areas. Daytime maximums however should be much faster at responding to the changing atmosphere – making this more of a daytime heatwave rather than a full blown non stop continuous heatwave (where maximums and minimums are included).

 

Forecast Maximums for Sunday, August 31st via OCF / BSCH.

 

 

During Sunday, maximums are expected to push into the low 30’s across Western and Central / Northern Inland QLD as well as the mid to high 20’s across the South East and Southern districts. This will include Northern and North East NSW as well. On Monday, much of the Western half and Central districts of QLD will head for the low to mid 30’s with the South East also pushing for 30ºc in some areas. From Tuesday through to at least Thursday, the entirety of Inland QLD, much of Northern QLD (the Peninsula), Central and South East Coastal areas will push into the 30’s with some areas in Western QLD heading for the mid to high 30’s (35-38ºc). During this time, winds are expected to increase over the South East quitter of the State which will also lead to a dramatic increase in fire danger potential. For many areas, these maximums will be between 6 and 9ºc above average in the South East and 6-10ºc above average for Inland areas depending on the exact location. 

 

Forecast Maximums for Tuesday, September 3rd via OCF / BSCH.

 

 

Lets get something straight though. NO THIS IS NOT A SUMMER HEATWAVE. A heatwave is a statistical characterisation. Its classed as 3 days or more of temperatures that are 4ºc+ ABOVE AVERAGE FOR THAT TIME OF YEAR. This comfortably fits that criteria. No records are expected to be broken due to a vile 2009 August heatwave and general late September heat in seasons past – but records don’t need to be broken for it to be a heatwave either. 

From Friday onwards, models are split about the heat continuing or easing – by this stage though, it would have already been 5 days straight for many areas anyway.

 

Forecast Maximums for South East QLD specifically on Thursday, September 5th via OCF / BSCH.

 

Extensive Heatwave to Impact QLD2019-08-29T12:26:57+10:00