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2 04, 2019

Possible Cyclone Brewing For WA

2019-04-02T18:29:57+10:00

After Severe TC Veronica produced historic rainfall and severe, dangerous flooding across the Pilbara.. it appears as though WA might need to prepare for another system which is brewing North of the NT at the moment. Above image via RAMMB – Cyclone Watch Zone is via HSC. A ‘Cyclone Watch’ refers to an area where conditions ‘may’ become favourable for tropical cyclone development – it doesn’t mean that a cyclone is guaranteed. 

 

Its common for people to believe that April isn’t a cyclone month, however this is simply untrue and 2019 may prove that once again. Historically, some of the strongest cyclones ever recorded have occurred in April (even late April) and in 2019, while a ‘major’ cyclone isn’t on the cards at this stage, we are monitoring a cluster of thunderstorms situated across the Arafura and Timor Sea’s North of the NT which is currently being forecast by several global models to consolidate over the next few days into a weak tropical low. This will inevitably produce increased showers, rain periods and thunderstorms across the QLD Peninsula and Northern NT areas. However from the weekend onwards, things are looking a little more interesting.

 

Global models are remaining in some form of agreement of tracking and intensify of the tropical low, albeit greatly varying timeframes. The majority of global models are expecting the system to intensify while tracking West to South West into the Joseph Bonaparte Gulf, West of the NT / North the Kimberley. From there, the system is currently ‘more likely than not’ to become a tropical cyclone over the Indian Ocean North or North West of the WA Kimberley. 

While a landfall location is very hard to pinpoint so far in advance, as a lot will depend on the timing of an approaching high pressure ridge – models are currently favouring the system to turn back towards the Coast which “could” mean that the Pilbara may be under threat again. At this stage, if the system were to become a tropical cyclone then models are indicating it will probably remain below ‘severe’ strength. In saying that though, sea surface temperatures are remaining extremely warm, so if a period of very little wind shear occurs, then rapid intensification cant be ruled out. Further updates will occur for the progression of this system over the next few days.

ECMWF showing a Category 2 cyclone over the Indian Ocean on Sunday night (April 7) – via Windy

 

Possible Cyclone Brewing For WA2019-04-02T18:29:57+10:00
31 03, 2019

Freezing Temperatures Hit NSW

2019-03-31T07:57:39+10:00

Parts of NSW have recorded their lowest March temperatures on record, with many locations along and surrounding the Ranges showing the potential for their first frost’s for 2019 overnight as temperatures plummeted across the State. Above image is a stock image.  

 


Across NSW, the temperature across most locations dropped considerably compared to previous nights / mornings, with areas along the Ranges potentially recording their first frost of 2019! Generally, most locations across the State will have recorded their coldest March morning since 2015. It was the Northern Rivers as a district and Eastern or Coastal parts of NSW that went a little harder with the anomalies and records.

 

Temperatures:

• Thredbo -4.2ºc – Coldest March temperature since 1984!
• Mount Ginini -2.9ºc
• Perisher -2.6ºc
• Nullo Mountain 2.5ºc
• Mount Boyce 3.0ºc
• Armidale 3.1ºc
• Bathurst 3.1ºc
• Canberra 3.1ºc
• Glen Innes 3.6ºc
• Port Macquarie 7.9ºc – Tied March record on current site
• Casino 11.2ºc – Coldest March Morning in 11 years
• Grafton 11.2ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years
• Newcastle 12.4ºc – Coldest March morning in 18 years
• Sydney City 12.5ºc – Coldest March morning in 14 years
• Byron Bay 15.9ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years

 

 

Note: Large parts of Western Sydney fell to between 7 and 11ºc, with the majority of locations recording their coldest March morning in 11 years (since 2008). Parts of the Hunter fell to as low as 5ºc, with most of that district recording its lowest March temperature since about 2015. Large parts of Northern and Central Inland NSW dropped well into single digits as well, with temperatures at their coldest since about 2015 for March too.

 

Real-time temperatures as of 7:10am across NSW and VIC showing the large area of cooler minimums. Image via BSCH, data provided by BOM.

 

Freezing Temperatures Hit NSW2019-03-31T07:57:39+10:00
31 03, 2019

Temperatures Plummet across Southern QLD

2019-03-31T07:50:08+10:00

South East QLD and large parts of NSW have endured their coldest March morning for about the last decade thanks to widespread dry and cool South to South West blowing across both areas. 

 

Across South East QLD, it was noticeably colder this morning compared to the rest of Summer as the South Westerly surged in after midnight, dropping the temperature by several degrees in the space of a short period of time. The difference for many locations between about midnight and sunrise was 7-9ºc with many locations sitting in the high teens / low 20’s around midnight and waking up to the low teens or even sub-teen temperatures. Along the Ranges, areas such as Toowoomba, Warwick and Stanthorpe dropped into single digits for the first time in 2019. 


• Stanthorpe 6.5ºc – Coldest March morning in 7 years
• Toowoomba 9.3ºc – Equal coldest March morning since 1993 (26 years)
• Warwick 9.4ºc – Coldest March morning in 7 years
• Canungra 9.6ºc
• Kingaroy 9.7ºc – Coldest March morning in 7 years
• Dalby 10.2ºc
• Wellcamp 10.3ºc
• Amberley 10.4ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years
• Oakey 10.7ºc
• Gympie 12.1ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years
• Brisbane Airport 13.0ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years
• Gatton 13.5ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years
• Redcliffe 14.4ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years
• Brisbane City 15.3ºc – Coldest March morning in 11 years

Note: For many areas, especially over South Eastern QLD, minimums this morning (Sunday morning) were around 10-14ºc colder than Saturday morning, purely thanks to the incredibly different winds and air masses that moved over the region in such a short period of time. 

Real-time temperatures as of 7:10am across Southern QLD showing the large area of cooler minimums. Image via BSCH, data provided by BOM.

Temperatures Plummet across Southern QLD2019-03-31T07:50:08+10:00
10 03, 2019

Australian March Record Broken In The Pilbara

2019-03-10T20:04:17+10:00
 

The Pilbara has copped some absolute furnace-like heat today with temperatures scorching to those normally experienced in the peak of Summer! This was all brought on by a surface trough located near the Pilbara Coast drawing in hot, dry, desert heat across the region for an extensive period of time which allowed temperatures to continuously scorch. Roebourne was the pick of the bunch though, breaking the Australian March Record of 47.8ºc set back in 2007 and 1998! Above image via Weatherzone, the yellow circle shows the 48ºc captured at Roebourne during the afternoon.

 

Top Temperatures:
• Roebourne 48.1ºc – New State & Australian Record!
• Marble Bar 47.4ºc – New March Record
• Onslow 47.2ºc – New March Record
• Port Hedland 47.0ºc – New March Record
• Telfer 46.3ºc – New March Record
• Wittenoom ~46.0ºc – New March Record
• Karijini North 45.8ºc
• Christmas Creek 45.7ºc
• Paraburdoo 45.7ºc
• Karratha 45.5ºc – Second hottest March day
• Mandora 45.5ºc – 0.1ºc off the March Record
• Fortescue Dave Forrest 45.3ºcLearmonth 45.2ºc
• Newman 45.2ºc – New March Record
• Warburton 44.8ºc – New March Record
• Degrussa Aerodrome 44.6ºc

 

 

Notes:
• 4 of the 12 recordings of 47ºc+ in March for Western Australia have occurred today.
• Roebourne has broken its March record of 47.8ºc with records dating back to 1957. Roebourne has also broken the State and Australian record of 47.8ºc set by both Carnarvon, WA in 2007 & Roebourne itself in 1998!
• Marble Bar (118), Port Headland (109) both have records dating back over 100 years, Onslow over 75 years, Telfer over 50 years, Newman and Warburton around the 40-45 year mark.
• A side note worth mentioning, Marble Bar has now officially recorded 107 consecutive days above 100ºF (37.8ºc). Their world record of 160 consecutive days will take some beating, but another 7 days above 100ºF are expected to stretch the run to 114+ days and it wouldn’t be a shock to see the 122 day run a few years ago get a run for its money.

 

Official Australian Records showing the maximum record for March across the Country being 47.8ºc. Note: all top 10 temperatures held by WA

Australian March Record Broken In The Pilbara2019-03-10T20:04:17+10:00
25 02, 2019

Super Typhoon Wutip – The Strongest February Typhoon In History!

2019-02-25T19:24:37+10:00

Super Typhoon Wutip has made history today, becoming the strongest typhoon in recorded history through the month of February. Thankfully it has achieved such a feat over open waters. Above image via RAMMB / CIRA.

 

Wutip has achieved history, becoming a Super Typhoon during Monday, February 25th 2019. The system is producing sustained winds of around 260km/h and wind gusts to well over 300km/h which makes it comfortably a Category 5 system but also, more importantly for history reasons, the strongest typhoon (not cyclone – specifically typhoon) for February. Such a feat has been achieved due to the fact February is virtually the complete opposite month for a typical typhoon season. To put it into perspective, this would be like Australia getting a system stronger than Cyclone Yasi in July. 

Rainbow Satellite imagery shows the perfect eye of Wutip via NOAA

 

 

For now, Wutip is remaining over open waters and not really bugging anyone – located well North of Yap and well West of Guam. The system has a perfectly symmetrical eye wall feature which is conducive of your typical Super Typhoon. Models are in full agreement that over the next 3 days, the system is expected to be very slow moving over favourable waters. This will at least maintain the system’s strength for a short period of time. Beyond the next 3 days there is a general agreement that the system will move towards either the Northern Philippines or Southern Taiwan. The good news is models are in full agreement that whatever path the system takes from Wednesday or Thursday onwards, it will enter very unfavourable much cooler waters and increased vertical wind shear which will rapidly weaken the system. Its likely to weaken so quickly that it may not even reach land as a circulation, but completely wash out. 

This makes it perfect for weather lovers, weather chasers and general enthusiasts alike to admire what is simply a perfect storm in the most unlikely of situations.

Super Typhoon Wutip forecast track by JTWC

 

Super Typhoon Wutip – The Strongest February Typhoon In History!2019-02-25T19:24:37+10:00
25 02, 2019

Record Heat Streak Ends for Brisbane – Continues for Ipswich!

2019-02-25T18:01:27+10:00

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
8 02, 2019

Ridiculous Rainfall Accumulations Up To Day 12 Of The Townsville Floods

2019-02-08T10:50:47+10:00

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

2019-02-07T12:15:33+10:00

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

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

2019-02-06T11:54:12+10:00

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!

2019-02-05T12:09:24+10:00

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

 

Notes:
• 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