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25 02, 2019

Record Heat Streak Ends for Brisbane – Continues for Ipswich!


Brisbane has finally ended its run of record breaking heat which has SMASHED the previous record. For those just West of the City though in Ipswich and surrounds… the record continues! 

It certainly hasn’t been “insanely hot” or “unbearably hot” by any means, but Brisbane has finally ended its record breaking run of 30ºc. The City reached 29.4ºc today (February 25th) which broke a run stretching from January 9th to February 24th – a total of 46 consecutive days. This obliterates the previous record of 30 consecutive days from January 27th to February 27th 2017. So you definitely cant argue that this is “normal”.

What is probably the most impressive feature of this stretch of heat, is that no individual days were excessively hot. In the 46 day stretch, only 2 days exceeded 34ºc (February 12 and 13). The only feature which is where people probably started complaining about the relentlessness of that heat was the 18 straight days above 32ºc which is pushing the realms of “noticeably above average” and is also a record for Brisbane for consecutive days above 32ºc. The addition of 57 consecutive nights above 20ºc probably didn’t help either (that streak ended this morning as well with 19.8ºc). During that stretch, only 2 nights were above 25ºc and only a handful above 24ºc – so nothing “excessive” just consistently relentless. This run of heat topped off a record hot January in terms of monthly average’s as well. 

Weatherzone Data for Brisbane from January 1 to February 25th

Ipswich on the other hand has pushed the streak much further. Ipswich reached 30.2ºc today, which makes it the 61st consecutive day above 30ºc and continues on a record breaking streak that is now over 20 days above the previous record. The last time Ipswich failed to reach 30ºc was 29.8ºc on Boxing Day, so that means today has been the coldest day of 2019 so far for the area. Apart from the 41ºc scorcher a little under 2 weeks ago, there hasn’t been an excessive number of days excessively above average so to speak – similar to Brisbane City, its just been relentless and consistently above 30ºc. Models are indicating Ipswich may only reach 29ºc tomorrow (Tuesday) but if it happened to make it to 30ºc, then it could be more than a week before sub-30 occurs again. Note: There are 3 blank maximum days for Ipswich on January 23, 24, 25 – When clicking on the data for those days, Ipswich either neared or exceeded 35ºc on all 3 days, well above the 30ºc requirement. So even though a true maximum wasn’t obtained, the 30ºc+ threshold we know was reached.

Weatherzone data for Ipswich from January 1st to February 25th

Record Heat Streak Ends for Brisbane – Continues for Ipswich!2019-02-25T18:01:27+10:00
18 02, 2019

Its Going To Be Hot First Before Anything Else


While all the focus is around Tropical Cyclone Oma and whether or not it is or isn’t coming to Queensland.. we do have other weather going on in the time being, the most significant being a low to moderate intensity heatwave which is forecast to move across the State during the first half of the week. Above image via OCF / BSCH showing Maximums for Tuesday.


A heatwave is classed as a period of 3+ consecutive days where maximum and minimum temperatures are at least 5ºc above average. The lower this anomaly, the lower the heatwave intensity, the higher it is then the higher the intensity. This is being classed as a low to “severe” or in other words, low to moderate strength heatwave where maximums are likely to be around the 5-8ºc maybe pushing 10ºc mark above the February average over the course of a 3-4 day period through the majority of QLD.


The heat is expected to build on Monday to above average over most of the State before a combination of a dry warming air mass combined with a dry South to South West flow over Inland areas and a very warm and humid North Easterly flow over Coastal areas kicks in and produces an increase in atmospheric heating. This is likely to produce widespread maximums of 40-45ºc and some isolated higher temps over Inland areas, while Coastal areas such as South East QLD should climb into the mid 30’s. This is likely to remain in place across Wednesday and Thursday as well where parts of South East QLD may push 40ºc while Southern and Central Inland areas scorch well above 40ºc. 

Forecast Maximums via OCF / BSCH for Thursday across Queensland

During Friday, the heat is expected to ease gradually over Southern and South East areas where maximums will still be above average but maybe 1-2ºc cooler than previous days. During the weekend however, regardless of what Oma does, a Southerly to South East flow is expected to scream in over the South East of the State and may drop temperatures to below 30ºc for the first time in 2 months for some areas while large parts of Eastern QLD should be back to at least normal if not below normal by Sunday. The only exception into the weekend will be Western and North West areas who will still be under the influence of 40ºc+ temperatures.

Forecast Maximums via OCF / BSCH for Saturday across Queensland


Its Going To Be Hot First Before Anything Else2019-02-18T12:10:12+10:00
11 02, 2019

Hot Conditions To Impact Flood Affected North QLD


As many residents of North QLD know, after a cyclone comes the heat.. and the heat is certainly coming in after the recent flood event across the region, which is only going to make conditions repulsive across the region. Above image – Wednesday maximums via OCF / BSCH.


Over the past few days, temperatures have pushed not only back to normal but above average across the Northern QLD and Tropical North QLD region. Townsville saw its warmest day in a month yesterday with 34ºc, Cairns its warmest since before Christmas with 38ºc! While areas across Northern Inland and North West QLD finally climbed back into the mid 30’s after being in the low 20’s as maximums over the past 1-2 weeks. 

OCF Forecast Maximums for Tuesday via BSCH


Across the next few days, temperatures are expected to only climb as a warming air mass moves over the region and combines with hot dry air coming from Inland Australia and pushing into Coastal parts of QLD courtesy of a coastal surface trough. This combination will allow maximums during Monday through to Thursday to climb well above average across Coastal parts of North QLD where daily maximums should reach the mid to high 30’s, while Northern Inland QLD should sit just above average in the mid to high 30’s as well. Some locations may even touch 40ºc. 


When you add this repulsive heat with extreme moisture laden surface conditions, and even ongoing extreme flooding… not only does the risk of waterborne diseases increase as waterborne insects will thrive, but even if the air itself is dry, the surface conditions where people exist, work, function.. will be extremely humid. This will make it feel much worse than what it really is.

OCF Forecast Maximums for Thursday via BSCH


Hot Conditions To Impact Flood Affected North QLD2019-02-11T13:35:47+10:00
10 02, 2019

Here Comes The Heat For SEQLD & NENSW!


While it has been warm across SEQLD and NENSW for an extensive period of time now (given it is Summer), it looks like the heat is about to get turned up several notches over the coming days with maximums pushing the low 40’s!


Its February, its Summer… it gets hot, yes. Even for February standards though, this is going to be a bit on the uncomfortable side. A surface trough is forecast to become positioned across the South East QLD region and North East NSW over the coming days. This trough is forecast to combine a warming air mass with very warm and muggy North Easterly winds over both areas during Sunday through to Tuesday. This will allow temperatures to push into the mid to high 30’s away from the Coast (areas such as Casino, Ipswich, Boonah, Beaudesert, Warwick, Gatton, Brisbane Valley, Gympie… the usual spots). Temperatures closer to the Coast will likely sit in the low to mid 30ºc range but the added humidity could make it feel several degrees warmer. The added bonus this time (unlike the last run of heat) is storms should bring some evening relief. Some may miss out some days, but overall the expectation is that during Sunday to Tuesday – most areas should receive something on 1 of the days minimum (the better chances are always further Inland thanks to the heat element). 

Forecast Maximums via OCF for Tuesday for SEQLD / NENSW



During Wednesday, the surface trough responsible for the above, is expected to move onto the Coast. This will lead to hotter and drier conditions pushing into Coastal areas which will inevitably lead to the temperature skyrocketing. Gatton could reach as high as 43 or 44ºc, Ipswich is expected to see the 40’s as well, with the usual places also pushing into the 40’s as well. Brisbane is expected to reach about 38ºc with the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast into the mid to high 30’s as well depending how far away from the beach you are. There is a chance of some storms activity very close to the Coast, but there is a risk that dry air pushing into both SEQ and NENSW as well as some drier air aloft, may suppress any storm threats. This will be a wait and see risk.


From Thursday into the weekend, the temperature should gradually ease back but conditions are still likely to be above average for February standards. During the period of Sunday to Wednesday, this will be deemed as a low to severe intensity heatwave as the normal average across SEQLD and NENSW is around 30-32ºc for this time of year, and these forecast temperatures are expected to be in the realms of 6-12ºc above that. A seperate blog will be issued for CQLD and Northern QLD.

Low to Severe Heatwave criteria via BOM for Tuesday to Thursday


Here Comes The Heat For SEQLD & NENSW!2019-02-10T11:37:54+10:00
8 02, 2019

Ridiculous Rainfall Accumulations Up To Day 12 Of The Townsville Floods


After 12 days of non basically non stop rain, it appears as though the event is finally over – from that perspective, as the flooding is still ongoing and will be for days, maybe even weeks in some areas. While we will have a full summary report done up over the next few days highlighting certain things (from a State perspective, not just Townsville, as North West QLD has some insanity from a numbers perspective that we wish to share), the past 12 days from a brief summary perspective have been well and truly historic for the Greater Townsville region.


Another day and night of continuous rain has lead to more falls of 100mm+ across Greater Townsville, and for the first time for the event, nobody “officially” recorded more than 200mm – we do need to acknowledge though that there were multiple reports coming into page of more than 300mm at Horseshoe Bay, Magnetic Island from multiple rounds of severe weather yesterday!

Top 24hr rainfall totals include:
• Clarke Range 186mm
• Bushland Beach 171mm
• Paluma 160mm
• Nelly Bay 154mm
• Toolakea 152mm
• Stony Creek 143mm
• Bluewater 141mm
• Townsville Airport 132mm
• Rollingstone 126mm
• Townsville City 118mm

24 hr Rainfall for Greater Townsville via BOM



Unless something dramatic happens over the next 24 hours, its unlikely these locations will add to their 12 day totals (i.e. make it a 13 day event). So the top-5 12 day accumulation totals are as follows:
• Paluma 2731mm
• Upper Bluewater 2347mm
• Rollingstone 2044mm
• Woolshed 2035mm
• Upper Black River 1955mm

12 day accumulative totals for the top 5 locations + Townsville City

Note: Paluma has a second gauge which also recorded welly over 2000mm however with multiple days now missing, we have elected to leave it out of the official data. The days it does have available for the previous 12 exceed 2000mm on their own anyway, but its likely that the station – give what it has, with whats its missing, cross checked with the valid Paluma gauge… it probably recorded something similar in the vicinity of 2600mm+
Its also worth noting that we have unofficial but reliable data coming out of Hervey Range where falls for the past 12 days have exceeded 2700mm as well. We will look to source that information more thoroughly over the next few days for posting purposes and for the finalised rainfall event summary blog over the weekend.


Perspectives and Streaks:
• Townsville has broken its 6 day, 7 day, 8 day, 9 day, 10 day, 11 day and 12 day accumulative records from this event. A final 12 day total of 1391.4mm has been observed.
• Townsville has also broken its February record of 960.8mm set in 2009 with 998.2mm already. 
• 5 locations (including the secondary Paluma gauge) cracked the 2m mark for rainfall.
• Over 115 locations that we know of, could be much more, broke the 1m mark for rainfall
• Upper Bluewater was the only location to crack 300mm+ on 3 individual days, multiple locations did it twice – some back to back
• Several locations recorded 3-4 consecutive days of 200mm+, Woolshed was the only location to achieve 5 straight days
• Upper Bluewater and Rollingstone recorded 10 straight days of 100mm, Paluma baring something unforeseen today, will have 12 straight days for the event. This “could” be an Australian record but the data to source through will take an extremely long time – we do know its more than any of Mount Bellenden Ker’s record breaking streaks. 
• Paluma’s 2731mm is likely the highest rainfall event (regardless of length) total for Australia outside of Mount Bellenden Ker who holds many records in that regard – it is also the highest rainfall event total since 1979 when Mt Bellenden Ker recorded 3847mm in 8 days
• We will keep the “x number of days since x location recorded 2731mm” for the main blog – but Paluma’s total is the equivalent of 16.5 years of “normal” rainfall at Birdsville – essentially, if youre in school right now, Birdsville hasn’t recorded that much rain since you were born. 

Ridiculous Rainfall Accumulations Up To Day 12 Of The Townsville Floods2019-02-08T10:50:47+10:00
7 02, 2019

Paluma cracks the 2.5m mark! Rainfall Summary as of Feb 7th


Over the course of the last 24 hours, further heavy rain has impacted the Paluma region whilst the indication of increased rainfall over the Whitsunday and Central Coast region has finally (from a forecast accuracy perspective) come to fruition. Rainfall across the Townsville region thankfully has eased off and should continue to do so unless some isolated in nature throws a curveball.



Some of the top 24hr totals to 9am Thursday:
• Jubilee Pocket 292mm
• Cannonvale 202mm
• Clarke Range 200mm
• Preston 192mm
• Peter Faust Dam 188mm
• Lower Gregory 183mm
• Eungella 148mm
• Bowen Airport 135mm
• Sarina 103mm


24hr rainfall totals to 9am Thursday via BOM


As records keep rolling, Paluma has continued on with its insane run of accumulative totals. Paluma recorded 165mm in the 24hrs to 9am Thursday, this makes it the 11th consecutive day above 100mm for the station as well as now accumulating a grand total of 2571mm for this event! 

For clarification these are the 11 individual daily totals: 
January 28th – 160mm
January 29th – 230mm
January 30th – 370mm
January 31st – 143mm
February 1st – 222mm
February 2nd – 261mm
February 3rd – 281mm
February 4th – 175mm
February 5th – 384mm
February 6th – 180mm
February 7th – 165mm
Grand total – 2571mm



The past 24 hours has also ended the 100mm streaks of both Upper Bluewater (22mm) and Rollingstone (19mm). This leaves Paluma on its own with this streak now. Woolshed is also just 12mm shy of the 2000mm mark as well, with Upper Bluewater, Paluma and Paluma alert stations already above this feat. 

For some comparative purposes with Paluma’s 2.5m of rain: 
• Brisbane has recorded the same amount of rainfall between April 17th 2016 and February 7th 2019 (1027 days)
• Sydney has recored the same about of rainfall between July 7th 2016 and February 7th 2019 (976 days)
• Adelaide has recorded the same amount of rainfall between April 9th 2014 and February 7th 2019 (1766 days).
• Darwin has recorded the same amount of rainfall between November 15th 2017 and February 7th 2019 (450 days).
• In a normal year, Birdsville averages around 168.7mm – this would be the equivalent of Birdsville recording more than 15 consecutive “average” years (roughly 5570 days as its a little over 15 years).


11 day Rainfall Accumulative totals for the top 6 locations


Paluma cracks the 2.5m mark! Rainfall Summary as of Feb 7th2019-02-07T12:15:33+10:00
6 02, 2019

Relief Forecast For Tasmania!


While Tasmania is still burning from widespread bushfires, it appears as though there is some hope now on forecast models that relief is on the way for the first time this year. Above image: Windy 10 day rainfall (orange 50mm+, red 100mm+).


Over the course of the next week, models are hinting at a series of different weather events moving across Tasmania which will make it feel much more like Tasmania and not the tinderbox it has been lately. After arguably the worst fire outbreak in recorded history (only really challenged by the infamous 1967 fires), models are giving some hope – not just for residents, but for firefighters too, who have been tirelessly working around the clock to ensure people’s safety.

Current Fire Map for Tasmania as of Wednesday afternoon February 6th 2019 via TAS Fire


The first bit of relief will be on Thursday. A low pressure system is forecast by numbers models to develop over Bass Strait or the Eastern Bight. This low is likely to then move South East and bring with it some warmer temperatures and increased humidity which are forecast to produce scattered storms across the State. Some of these could become severe. Unfortunately that does mean that damaging winds and increased lightning frequency are a risk – which could locally produce or enhance fire activity. The flip side is, models are looking at widespread falls of 5-15mm and isolated higher falls across the State.

Forecast instability for Tasmania on Thursday afternoon via BSCH


During the weekend and into next week, multiple cold fronts are then expected to sweep across the State. These fronts will inevitably bring damaging wind gusts with them of 90-110km/h (which is fairly normal for Tasmania). The better news though is theyll bring widespread RAIN! Between Saturday and Tuesday, falls of 50-100mm are possible across Western TAS, with falls of 25-50mm over the North and South East of the State. Isolated higher falls are also possible. The second cold front is also expected to be linked to a vigorous low pressure system half way between Tasmania and Antarctica – this will allow for Antarctic Winter air to surge up behind the system and engulf Tasmania Tuesday into Wednesday which may lead to some snow flurries occurring during the overnight hours – this par of the forecast is subject to change, as it is Summer, so if conditions aren’t 100% right, then that snow could turn to rain very quickly – even so, its still rain!

10 day snowfall forecast for Tasmania via Windy


Relief Forecast For Tasmania!2019-02-06T16:40:29+10:00
6 02, 2019

Rainfall Summary for the Townsville Floods as of February 6th 2019


The rainfall totals that keep on keeping on.. even when it seemed like the bulk of it was over, another 50-150mm has fallen over the Townsville area overnight with up to 250mm in some isolated areas. Thankfully for those further South, the predicted 200mm+ didn’t come off, with models failing to pick the monsoon trough convergence movements – this limited the impacts further South, despite some high accumulative totals occurring over the past 10 days regardless of last night. 



The top 24hr totals up to 9am Wednesday include:
• Michael Creek 239mm
• Upper Stone 222mm
• Running Creek 199mm
• Rollingstone 187mm
• Paluma 180mm
• Eungella 150mm
• Widespread falls of 50-150mm across Greater Townsville
• Widespread falls of 50-100mm across the Whitsunday Peninsula (Proserpine, Airlie Beach) back into the Eungella Ranges


Greater Townsville 24hr rainfall via BOM


10 day accumulative totals:
• Paluma 2406mm
• Paluma Alert 2299mm
• Upper Bluewater 2213mm
• Woolshed 1962mm
• Rollingstone 1899mm
• Upper Black River 1891mm
• Mt Margaret 1721mm
• Sandy Plateau (highest in the Central Coast area) 1619mm
• Widespread falls of 1200-1700mm across the Greater Townsville area
Note: We have had unofficial totals of in excess of 2600mm from this event, sent in via private message from the Hervey Range area


10-day rainfall accumulation graph for the top 6 locations



Perspective for Paluma’s 2406mm:
• It is 1.4x Darwin’s annual total, its also just 300mm shy of Darwin’s record yearly total
• It is higher than the record yearly total for Townsville (2399mm in 2000)
• Its more than double Brisbane’s yearly average
• Its 2.5 years worth of rainfall for Sydney 
• It is the equivalent of 4.5 years worth of rainfall for Adelaide – Adelaide would also need to break its record for yearly rainfall for almost 3 consecutive years to match what Paluma has recorded in 10 days.
• Its almost 15 years worth of rainfall for Birdsville!

Additional Notes: 
• Paluma’s 2406mm is likely the highest rainfall event total (regardless of duration) from the past 40 years – since Mt Bellenden Ker recorded well over 3000mm.
• Upper Bluewater, Paluma and Rollingstone have maintained their run of 100mm days, with 10 consecutive now. While it would be a very lengthy process to check, there is every chance this is the highest consecutive tally of 100mm days for well over 20 years, possibly even over 50 years as many of the high end rain events didn’t cover 10 days over the past 70 years and Mt Bellenden Ker’s 3800mm in 1979 was over 8 days, not 10+. (Not sure why Paluma was removed from previous blogs with this streak – this was an oversight) – Several locations between Townsville / Ross River Dam and Ingham had a streak of 7-8 consecutive days of 100mm+ as well
• Upper Bluewater is still the only location to record 3 300mm+ days from this event. Woolshed still holds the highest consecutive 200mm days with 5.
• Well over 100 locations have now surpassed the 1000mm mark for this event
• Townsville is just 97mm shy of its wettest February in recorded history (960mm from 2009 is the record) and the 1257mm over the past 10 days for Townsville City is also well above the previous 10 day accumulative record for the City.

Rainfall Summary for the Townsville Floods as of February 6th 20192019-02-06T11:54:12+10:00
5 02, 2019

Over 2000mm Recorded In 9 days!


Just as things were calming down, a dangerous storm developed over the Bluewater region which has lead to another night of catastrophic flooding in the region! This has lead to both Paluma and Upper Bluewater surpassing the 2000mm mark for this rain event. Due to large discrepancies in rainfall data across several high end rain events in Australian and Queensland history, it is virtually impossible to determine whether or not a record has occurred. However this is the first time in a very long time – potentially 40 years that a location has recored 2000mm+ for a single rain event (cyclone or non cyclone) in Australia. The number of 1000mm locations is also continuing to claim as we complete day 9 and enter day 10 for this mind bogglingly wet period.


Top 24hr totals to 9am Tuesday: 
• Paluma 384mm
• Upper Bluewater 364mm
• Paluma Alert 344mm
• Rollingstone 239mm
• Keelbottom 222mm
• Upper Black River 214mm
• Upper Finch Hatton 208mm

24hr Rainfall Totals for Greater Townsville via BOM


Top 9 day rainfall totals, or the only 2 that really matter:
• Paluma 2192mm
• Upper Bluewater 2091mm

• For Paluma the 9 day totals individually are as follows: 160, 230, 370, 143, 222, 245, 303, 175 & 344 = 2192mm
• For Upper Bluewater the 9 day totals individually are as follows: 101, 138, 243, 376, 320, 173, 217, 159, 364 = 2091mm


• Bluewater (2091mm) and Paluma (2192mm) have both exceeded the 2000mm mark, which is likely the first time since Mount Bellenden Ker back in 1979 that this feat has been achieved. There are large discrepancies in data from Mt Bellenden Ker which make it virtually impossible to determine when rainfall events start and end.
• The rainfall recorded at Paluma (ranked 1 over Upper Bluewater) has the equivalent of 13 years worth of rainfall in Birdsville.
• Townsville with 1175mm has now surpassed its annual average rainfall of 1129.6mm – all of that falling in just a 7 day bracket! 
• Over 85 locations have recorded in excess of 1000mm across the last 9 days. To see a handful of locations across a short period of time is ridiculous, this is on another level! 
• Rollingstone and Upper Bluewater have kept their streaks in tact with 9 consecutive days above 100mm. For Upper Bluewater this was the third day of 300mm+ which is currently the highest number of 300mm days for this event (a handful of locations are on 2)


Over 2000mm Recorded In 9 days!2019-02-05T12:09:24+10:00
4 02, 2019

Rainfall Summary February 4th – Townsville Flood Event


Over the past 24 hours we saw what was inevitably the nail in the coffin for the Dam as more than 400mm fell over the Dam Catchment area leading to the inevitable 100% gate opening as the volume of water that was going into the dam exponentially increased. Greater Townsville also copped another widespread 200mm with further rain still yet to come…


Some of the Top 24hr totals:
• Woodlands 402mm
• Nelly Bay 268mm
• Bluewater 245mm
• Louisa Creek 241mm
• Townsville City 233mm
• Kiran 229mm
• Aitkenvale 225mm
• Rollingstone 225mm
• Cardwell gap 223mm
• Bushland Beach 223mm
• Garbutt 222mm
• Reed Beds 220mm

Woodlands 400mm+ total for the 24hrs to 9am Monday. 300mm of that fell in under 4 hours during a dangerous storm. Image via BOM



Top 8 day totals: 
• Upper Bluewater 1731mm
• Paluma 1667mm
• Woolshed 1660mm
• Upper Black River 1500mm
• Mt Margaret 1472mm
• Rollingstone 1451mm
• Woodlands 1429mm
• Townsville City 1157mm

Greater Townsville 24hr totals via BOM



• The 1731mm for Upper Bluewater is now within 250mm of becoming the #1 rain event in Australian history, currently ranked 3
• Townsville’s 1157mm is well and truly above the 10-day record with an obvious 2 days left for rainfall to occur across the City. The 7 day total of 1012mm up to 9am yesterday was a confirmed 7 day record as well
• This is the 8th straight day that a location between Mackay and Ingham has recorded in excess of 300mm, and the second consecutive day that somewhere has recorded over 400mm
• 63 locations have now broken the 1000mm mark for this event across the past 8 days, with another 12 on top of that over 900mm (75 locations all up). 
• Upper Bluewater and Rollingstone remain the only 2 locations to record 8 consecutive days above 100mm after Paluma recorded just 47mm and stopped at 7 consecutive days. Woolshed’s 200mm streak is also over with 106mm recorded in the 24hrs to 9am Monday morning. Paluma Dam has recored 7 of the past 8 day above 100mm with the 1 day remaining the 99mm on Thursday (1mm short). 

Rainfall Summary February 4th – Townsville Flood Event2019-02-04T10:21:55+10:00