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Friday 09 June 2000

Record dry season rain in Qld/NT Gulf country 17Jun00
Rainfall for the 24 hours to 9am (top), and average rainfall for the month of June (above). Cloud and a cold airmass kept daytime temperatures across much of tropical NT and Qld well below normal (below).
Some long-standing records for June rainfall were broken when gauges were read on the NT coast and around the Gulf of Carpentaria this morning. Georgetown, 280km SW of Cairns, recorded 60.4mm, its heaviest one-day June total in 118 years of record. Warruwi, on a small island off the northern NT coast 290km ENE of Darwin, recorded a seemingly insignificant 20mm, still its highest 24 hour total in 78 years. The heaviest 24 hour totals were reported from the southwest Gulf of Carpentaria. Centre Island registered 72mm while a gauge on the Limmen River 140km WNW along the southern Gulf coast registered 81mm. Road conditions around the southern Gulf were described as appaling, with trucks and travellers stranded and cattle musters brought to a halt.

Median rainfall in this area is typically between 25 and 50mm for the entire 6 months of Winter and Spring, underlining the unusual nature of the falls. Low level moisture has moved into the area on easterly winds over the past few days, and a sharp middle level trough moving across from the west, accompanied by good uplift into the entrance zone of a strong sub-tropical jetstream, provided the broad scale trigger for the rain. Temperatures under the cloudband were again up to 10 below normal today, with the mercury rising to only 15 at Camooweal.

Today's highest rainfall totals for the 24 hours to 9am

81.0 Limmen River McArthur NT
60.4 Georgetown PO Qld
51.8 Benmara NT
51.5 Oroners Station Qld

Other heavy falls in northern NT and Qld:
44.2 Normanton PO Qld
41.0 Croydon Town Qld
40.8 Black Point NT
38.6 Burketown PO Qld
37.2 Cape Tribulation Store Qld

Today's highest & lowest temps

Other extremes

Black Point NT: 41mm in 12h to 9am
Centre Is NT: 25mm in 3h to 6am
Georgetown Qld: 31mm in 3h to 9am
Double Island Point LH Qld: 16mm in 2h to 2pm, 38mm in 3h to midnight, 7.8mm in 10m to 11pm
Mt Read Tas: 20mm in 3h to 9pm

Wind gusts:
Cape Grim Tas: 98km/h at 10pm

Records set this day

Highest 24-hour rainfall total for June: (previous record and years of computerised record shown in brackets):
Warruwi NT: 20.0 (14.7, 78)
Centre Is NT: 72.0 (63.5, 34)
Georgetown PO Qld: 60.4 (54.6, 118)

Lowest minimum temperature for June (previous record and years of computerised record shown in brackets):
Nowra RAN Air Station NSW: 1.0 (1.4, 45)

Maximum Minimum
30.0 Coconut Is Qld 25.0 Coconut Is Qld
-2.0 Crackenback NSW -7.7 Cooma AP NSW

Greatest variations from normal

Maximum Minimum
16.5 Horsham Vic
11.0 Bairnsdale AP Vic
15.0 Camooweal Qld
18.4 Croydon Qld
15.7 Richmond PO Qld
-3.7 Eyre WA
-3.5 Yeelirrie WA