Sunday 16 FEB 2003

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2003

Dec

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Record rain in western and central NT

1. 500hPa geopotential height and vorticity. All COLA at 9.30am NT time today

2. 700hPa vertical velocity

3. Precipitable water and totals-totals instability index

4. 850hPa temperature, humidity and winds.

Record rain in western and central NT

Record February rains fell across western and central parts of the Northern Territory today. Wave Hill Station, 550km south of Darwin, recorded 145.8mm in the 24 hours to 9am, its highest February one-day fall in 28 years of computerised records. This comes on top of the 76.8mm recorded there yesterday morning. Nearly half the total -- 71mm -- fell in the three hours to 6 this morning in a thunderstorm.

Not to be outdone, Tennant Creek Airport broke its all-time one-day rainfall record in the 24 hours to 9am Monday 17 February with 156.8mm in the gauge. The previous highest 24-hour total was 138.4mm. 100mm of the total catch fell in 6 hours between 9 this evening and 3am Monday.

The intensification of the monsoon trough, and its southern movement down to the base of the NT Top End, has given general falls of 100 to 300mm over the past few days. This particular episode has been generated by the movement of a Low in the trough to the NE Kimberley, just west of the WA/NT border. The Low extends well up in the atmosphere and slopes to the SE, as shown in the first chart (right) at the 500hPa level, or about 6km. The blue area shows a significant area of negative vorticity, or spin, in the upper atmosphere, while the negative and green dashed lines in chart 2 show that there's considerable uplift occurring at 700hPa or about 3km over central and southern parts of the Territory.

Chart 3 shows a huge buff area, representing high levels of instability covering the entire NT, while a tongue of >65mm precipitable water is being injected by the low from the Joseph Bonaparte Gulf SE into the Wave Hill area. Precipitable water is the total depth of liquid water that would result if all water vapor contained in a vertical column of air could be "wrung out", leaving the air completely dry. It indicates the total humidity of the air above a location, and is a good indicator of the amount of moisture potentially available to supply rainfall. 65 is a very high level.

The final panel shows the situation at 850hPa, or about 1.5km above the surface, a useful level as it shows conditions close to the ground but not affected by surface irregularities. A huge area of dark green represents relative humidity levels above 90%, while the wind barbs show a gentle circulation of around 10 knots around the Kimberley low sweeping moisture down from the north. A tongue of relatively cool air (16°) overlies the Wave Hill area. The combined result of the cooler upper air, upper vorticity and confluent surface winds produced significant instability (uplift), and with huge amounts of precipitable water available, heavy rain and areas of thunderstorms were the natural result.

Details of other heavy 24 hour and short duration falls are given below.

National weather extremes for today

Data provided by the Bureau of Meteorology

Records set this day (previous record and years of computerised record shown in brackets):
Highest daily rainfall for February:
Wave Hill NT: 145.8mm (135.2, 29)

Quality control note: Data is final. It includes late-received rainfall data and has been subject to BoM quality control checks.
Data is as received at 13:38EST, 03/03/2004.

Weather observations for today
Noteworthy  Weather         Capital  Cities         Regional  Cities       Alpine  Stations
Bureau of Meteorology Rainfall Bulletins and Weather Notes

Hottest
Highest maximum temperature>Greatest variation above normal maximum Highest minimum temperatureGreatest variation above normal minimum

41.2 MARBLE BAR COMPARISON E Pilbara WA
41.0 MARBLE BAR E Pilbara WA
40.7 MARREE NE Pastoral SA
40.5 ANDAMOOKA NW Pastoral SA
40.0 FITZROY CROSSING AERO W Kimberley WA
40.0 POONCARIE TELECENTRE Lower Darling NSW

+8.6   37.2 TAREE (RADIO STATION 2RE) MidNorth Coast S NSW
+8.0   38.7 TEMORA A.R.S. SW Slopes N NSW
+7.1   33.5 RIVERVIEW OBSERVATORY Sydney--east NSW
+6.8   33.1 SYDNEY AIRPORT AMO Sydney--east NSW
+6.4   38.2 BARADINE FORESTRY NW Plains E NSW

29.0 WITTENOOM W Pilbara WA
29.0 MOOMBA AIRPORT NE Pastoral SA
29.0 WINTON AIRPORT Northwest QLD
28.9 CADJEBUT W Kimberley WA
28.9 WINTON POST OFFICE Northwest QLD

+11.1   21.5 BOMBALA (THERRY STREET) Goulburn/Monaro NSW
+8.7   26.0 WYALONG POST OFFICE SW Slopes N NSW
+8.4   25.2 QUANDIALLA POST OFFICE SW Slopes N NSW
+8.0   26.7 COONAMBLE COMPARISON CW Plains N NSW
+7.9   19.7 TUMBARUMBA POST OFFICE SW Slopes S NSW

Coldest
Lowest maximum temperatureGreatest variation below normal maximum Lowest minimum temperatureGreatest variation below normal minimum

9.4 MOUNT WELLINGTON Southeast TAS
11.5 MOUNT READ W Coast TAS
14.0 TASMAN ISLAND Southeast TAS
14.2 WEEAPROINAH W Coast VIC
14.9 MAATSUYKER ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE Southeast TAS

-10.5   21.1 TOCUMWAL AIRPORT Riverina E NSW
-9.8   25.7 QUILPIE AIRPORT Far SW QLD
-9.4   24.0 BEVERLEY Cent Wheatbelt WA
-9.2   24.8 MOORA Central West WA
-8.2   27.3 VICTORIA RIVER DOWNS N Rivers NT

6.0 LAKE ST CLAIR NATIONAL PARK Central Plateau TAS
6.6 MOUNT WELLINGTON Southeast TAS
7.2 TARRALEAH VILLAGE Derwent Valley TAS
7.3 MOUNT READ W Coast TAS
7.7 HARTZ MOUNTAIN (KEOGHS PIMPLE) Southeast TAS

-6.8   18.1 NYANG STATION W Gascoyne WA
-2.8   11.5 TENTERFIELD (FEDERATION PARK) N Tablelands W NSW
-2.7   21.7 GASCOYNE JUNCTION W Gascoyne WA
-2.5   21.6 LEARMONTH AIRPORT W Pilbara WA
-2.4   20.1 DENHAM W Gascoyne WA

Wettest Major City Extremes
Todays highest rainfall totals for the 24 hours to 9am. It includes the top 5 totals nationally followed by all reported falls of 50mm or more.

151.8 WAVE HILL N Rivers NT
115.2 UPPER ADELAIDE RIVER N Rivers NT
96.2 RANKEN RIVER N Plateau NT
86.8 HUMPTY DOO COLLARD ROAD N Rivers NT
84.0 MOOMBA (TANTANNA) NE Pastoral SA

WESTERN AUSTRALIA
    N Kimberley
51.8 FARAWAY BAY
    Lower West
53.6 FERGUSON VALLEY

NORTHERN TERRITORY
    N Rivers
151.8 WAVE HILL
115.2 UPPER ADELAIDE RIVER
86.8 HUMPTY DOO COLLARD ROAD
84.0 COOINDA AERODROME
83.2 MCMINNS LAGOON
82.2 TANUMBIRINI
81.0 MARLOW'S LAGOON
78.0 TERRITORY WILDLIFE PARK
78.0 MARLOW LAGOON - FLOCKHART DVE
73.4 HUMPTY DOO EVAN ROAD
73.0 UPPER WICKHAM RIVER
70.0 PIGEON HOLE
67.5 BULEY ROCKHOLE
65.0 CAMFIELD
65.0 MOUNT SANFORD
64.0 PORT KEATS AERO
62.0 PEPPIMENARTI
57.0 BAN BAN SPRINGS
54.0 VICTORIA RIVER ROADHOUSE
51.6 DARWIN BOTANIC GARDENS
51.2 WALKER CREEK
51.0 DARWIN BOWLS CLUB
50.6 DARWIN AIRPORT COMPARISON
50.4 BLACK POINT
50.0 FORT HILL WHARF
    N Plateau
96.2 RANKEN RIVER
84.0 NEWCASTLE WATERS
73.5 ELLIOTT
60.4 SOUDAN
59.6 EPENARRA

SOUTH AUSTRALIA
    NE Pastoral
84.0 MOOMBA (TANTANNA)

QUEENSLAND
    N Peninsula
52.0 COEN POST OFFICE

  Max+/- norm Min+/- normRain to 9am
BROOME AIRPORT 33.6 +0.7 28.5 +2.6 0.0
ALBANY AIRPORT 20.1 -4.9 17.9 +3.6 2.2
PERTH AIRPORT 30.5 -1.3 20.2 +2.8 0.0
KALGOORLIE-BOULDER AIRPORT 27.7 -4.2 21.2 +3.5 0.6
DARWIN AIRPORT 30.4 -1.0 23.9 -0.8 48.8
ALICE SPRINGS AIRPORT 31.8 -3.1 23.6 +2.9 0.0
ADELAIDE (KENT TOWN) 28.4 -0.9 19.6 +2.5 2.2
MOUNT GAMBIER AERO 20.6 -4.5 13.8 +2.2 0.0
CAIRNS AERO 31.6 +0.5 23.9 +0.2 10.6
TOWNSVILLE AERO 32.3 +1.3 24.1 +0.1 3.4
ROCKHAMPTON AERO 30.8 -0.4 21.6 -0.4 0.0
AMBERLEY AMO 31.2 +0.9 17.2 -2.3 0.0
BRISBANE AERO 29.2 20.6 0.0
ARMIDALE AIRPORT AWS 29.3 14.5 6.0
COFFS HARBOUR MO 30.5 +3.8 21.9 +2.5 0.0
NEWCASTLE NOBBYS SIGNAL STATION AWS 27.0 +1.6 22.0 +2.7 0.0
SYDNEY (OBSERVATORY HILL) 31.7 +6.0 22.6 +3.9 0.4
PROSPECT DAM 32.5 +4.8 21.4 +3.7 1.4
WOLLONGONG UNIVERSITY 31.0 +5.4 21.8 +3.5 3.9
CANBERRA AIRPORT 26.4 -0.6 19.7 +6.7 0.0
WAGGA WAGGA AMO 33.1 +2.3 20.8 +4.5 0.0
MILDURA AIRPORT 33.9 +2.4 20.0 +3.6 0.0
EAST SALE AIRPORT 22.9 -2.4 14.4 +1.3 0.0
MELBOURNE REGIONAL OFFICE 21.3 -4.5 15.2 +0.7 1.4
LAVERTON RAAF 20.0 -5.5 16.0 +1.9 2.0
BALLARAT AERODROME 20.0 -5.0 13.0 +1.6 0.6
LAUNCESTON AIRPORT 22.7 -0.4 14.3 +4.0 0.2
HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD) 17.2 -4.4 12.7 +0.7 0.2

Downpours Gales & Gusts
High rainfall for periods of 6 hours or less. Highest wind gusts above 89km/h or mean wind above 62km/h (gale force). Wind direction and mean windspeed shown in brackets.
WESTERN AUSTRALIA
    E Kimberley
KUNUNURRA AERO
11.0mm in 35 min to 13:30 18.9mm/h
11.0mm in 1 hr to 13:30 11.0mm/h
    Lower West
ROTTNEST ISLAND
8.0mm in 20 min to 14:53 24.0mm/h
16.0mm in 3 hr to 15:00 5.3mm/h
9.0mm in 8 min to 15:01 67.5mm/h
11.8mm in 29 min to 15:30 24.4mm/h
28.8mm in 1 hr to 15:30 28.8mm/h
    SW & S Coast
GARDEN ISLAND HSF
15.6mm in 13 min to 15:43 72.0mm/h
1.6mm in 1 min to 15:44 96.0mm/h
10.6mm in 7 min to 15:51 90.9mm/h
6.6mm in 35 min to 16:26 11.3mm/h
35.0mm in 3 hr to 18:00 11.7mm/h
CAPE NATURALISTE
9.4mm in 47 min to 10:47 12.0mm/h
11.0mm in 1 hr to 11:00 11.0mm/h
15.0mm in 3 hr to 12:00 5.0mm/h
MANDURAH
15.4mm in 1 hr to 17:00 15.4mm/h
24.0mm in 3 hr to 18:00 8.0mm/h
BUNBURY
10.4mm in 1 hr to 08:00 10.4mm/h
    Cent Wheatbelt
CUNDERDIN AIRFIELD
8.4mm in 20 min to 17:26 25.2mm/h
11.8mm in 11 min to 17:37 64.4mm/h
10.0mm in 23 min to 18:00 26.1mm/h
31.2mm in 1 hr to 18:00 31.2mm/h
32.0mm in 3 hr to 18:00 10.7mm/h
10.8mm in 33 min to 18:33 19.6mm/h
11.4mm in 1 hr to 19:00 11.4mm/h
    Gt Southern
LAKE GRACE
13.2mm in 1 hr to 23:00 13.2mm/h
    Goldfields
SOUTHERN CROSS AIRFIELD
21.0mm in 43 min to 23:43 29.3mm/h
NORTHERN TERRITORY
    N Rivers
MIDDLE POINT AWS
12.4mm in 1 hr to 12:00 12.4mm/h
16.0mm in 3 hr to 12:00 5.3mm/h
12.4mm in 1 hr to 15:00 12.4mm/h
5.4mm in 31 min to 23:31 10.5mm/h
    Arnhem
WARRUWI
15.0mm in 3 hr to 15:00 5.0mm/h
GOVE AIRPORT
13.2mm in 17 min to 21:30 46.6mm/h
13.2mm in 1 hr to 21:30 13.2mm/h
20.2mm in 1 hr to 22:00 20.2mm/h
    Roper-McArthur
WOLLOGORANG
19.0mm in 3 hr to 09:00 6.3mm/h
BORROLOOLA
19.0mm in 3 hr to 00:00 6.3mm/h
11.2mm in 1 hr to 14:00 11.2mm/h
    Victoria
LAJAMANU
16.0mm in 3 hr to 09:00 5.3mm/h
WAVE HILL
71.0mm in 3 hr to 06:00 23.7mm/h
KIDMAN SPRINGS
40.0mm in 6 hr to 15:00 6.7mm/h
    Darwin-Daly
DARWIN AIRPORT
5.6mm in 16 min to 14:30 21.0mm/h
POINT STUART AWS
21.0mm in 3 hr to 14:00 7.0mm/h
27.0mm in 3 hr to 15:00 9.0mm/h
27.0mm in 3 hr to 16:00 9.0mm/h
MCCLUER ISLAND
4.2mm in 11 min to 05:00 22.9mm/h
12.2mm in 55 min to 17:00 13.3mm/h
12.2mm in 1 hr to 17:00 12.2mm/h
DUM IN MIRRIE
24.0mm in 3 hr to 15:00 8.0mm/h
19.0mm in 3 hr to 21:00 6.3mm/h
MANGO FARM
15.0mm in 3 hr to 06:00 5.0mm/h
PORT KEATS AERO
14.4mm in 1 hr to 09:00 14.4mm/h
15.0mm in 3 hr to 09:00 5.0mm/h
    Barkly
TENNANT CREEK AIRPORT
10.6mm in 1 hr to 03:00 10.6mm/h
10.4mm in 1 hr to 03:30 10.4mm/h
10.4mm in 30 min to 23:30 20.8mm/h
10.8mm in 1 hr to 23:30 10.8mm/h
    Alice Springs
ALI CURUNG
34.0mm in 6 hr to 21:00 5.7mm/h
QUEENSLAND
    Northwest
CAMOOWEAL TOWNSHIP
15.0mm in 3 hr to 00:00 5.0mm/h
    Far SW
QUILPIE AIRPORT
20.0mm in 3 hr to 12:00 6.7mm/h
NEW SOUTH WALES
    Sydney--east
SYDNEY AIRPORT AMO
6.8mm in 31 min to 16:30 13.2mm/h
HOMEBUSH (OLYMPIC STADIUM) AWS
6.2mm in 32 min to 16:00 11.6mm/h
ISLANDS
    Islands
NORTH EAST ISLAND
25.0mm in 3 hr to 08:00 8.3mm/h
25.0mm in 3 hr to 09:00 8.3mm/h
24.0mm in 3 hr to 10:00 8.0mm/h

SOUTH AUSTRALIA
    Kangaroo Is
CAPE WILLOUGHBY : 70(140/ 63 ) at 23:00
VICTORIA
    W Gippsland
WILSONS PROMONTORY LIGHTHOUSE : 78(240/ 67 ) at 23:00
TASMANIA
    N Coast
CAPE GRIM B.A.P.S. : 78(200/ 69 ) at 15:00