Friday 13 AUG 2004

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2004

Dec

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Gales, blizzards, dust storms, fire, flooding and a tornado in the SE
Bushfires continue in QLD

The surface chart for 4pm EST shows a secondary low of 987hPa on the west coast of Tasmania poised to cross the island. Squally winds with gusts to storm force accompanied the front and troughs as they crossed southeastern states. BoM

Gales, blizzards, dust storms, fire, flooding and a tornado in the SE

Winds swirling around a low pressure system brought a wild concoction of weather to southeastern states today. The 987hPa low took the unusual course of making a land crossing of northern TAS during the evening; most lows pass either down the West Coast and then under the island or through Bass Strait.

While TAS benefited from relatively lighter winds near the centre of the low, nearby mainland states bore the full brunt of the tight pressure gradient surrounding it. A cold front and two troughs circling the low each brought several hours of even stronger, squallier winds with their passage. In the NSW Snowy Mountains and VIC Alps, blizzard conditions closed roads and blew over heavy vehicles. On the Alpine Way around midday, four vehicles, including vans, boats and a 20-seater bus, were blown on their sides or roofs, while one vehicle was blown completely off the road. A semi-trailer was blown on its side on the Kosciuszko Road between Jindabyne and Perisher Valley around 11.30am, blocking the road for 2 hours. Tourist buses were prevented from leaving resorts for fear that they would be blown over. The Great Alpine Road was also closed for a time today between Harrietville and Mt Hotham when blizzard conditions cut visibility to zero.

Unfortunately, most Alpine AWS anemometers were affected by icing today, so the peak gusts listed below are not necessarily representative, but emergency workers in the Snowy Mountains estimated winds of up to 120km/h as they were rescuing overturned vehicles. The highest wind gusts reported in NSW were 104km/h at Bellambi, 96 at Braidwood and Goulburn and 94km/h at Nowra RAN. Kosciuszko Chalet reported 2.75m of snow on the ground at 9am, and blizzard conditions produced another 10cm or so at Snowy Mountains resorts during the day. In VIC, Mt Buller reported a top gust of 106km/h, the new AWS at Omeo got a workout with a top gust of 96km/h and Mt Hotham reported 95km/h, possibly ice affected.

While blizzards were raging in the high country, the winds fanned a fire through 10 to 15ha of forest country 60km S of Cooma. Dust storms caused problems with reduced visibility on the Cann River Highway, the Snowy Mountains Highway, the Monaro Highway and the Kings Highway around Bungendore and Braidwood, while a large tree blown across the Kings Highway between Braidwood and Batemans Bay brought traffic to a standstill. Farther afield, many stations in northern SA, SW QLD and NW NSW reported raised dust during the day, with Thargomindah in SW QLD reporting a full-on dust storm reducing visibility to 100m at 3pm. Stations across SA today reported gales, with the top gust 100km/h at Hindmarsh Island, 70km SSE of Adelaide.

For good measure, there were unconfirmed reports of a tornado striking Yankalilla, 65km SSW of Adelaide on the Fleurieu Peninsula. A line of thunderstorms and showers crossed the area soon after 10am, and radar returns indicate that a small area of intense rainfall moved across the Yankalilla area from the WNW at about 10.10am. No other details are known at present.

In TAS, 5 days of rain across the state has resulted in flood alerts being posted for all river systems. Today, minor flooding was reported from some gauges on the middle Derwent and in the Jordan River which also flows into the Derwent Estuary. Other systems remain below minor flood level.

Fire hotspot map as at 2.30am today. The map is prepared by the QLD Rural Fire Service from NASA Earth Observation Satellite Terra data, through the CSIRO Sentinel website.

Bushfires continue in QLD

Sporadic bushfires again caused damage in SE QLD today, while dozens of fires continue to burn across the state. The hotspot map at right gives an indication of the widespread nature of bushfires across QLD at present. The continuing absence of rain coupled with warm periods of strong, dry westerly winds has led fire authorities to warn that this is one of the most dangerous fire seasons that QLD has had to face.

Among the incidents reported today:

  • A fire that burnt through 2ha at Mt Tamborine behind the Gold Coast destroyed a shed and a car.
  • Firefighters were trying to bring a blaze threatening farmland near Kenilworth on the Sunshine Coast under control late this evening.
  • An illegal burn got out of control at Bouldercombe, 20km S of Rockhampton.
  • Several hundred hectares of grassland were burnt out at Cabarlah, 15km NNE of Toowoomba.

 

 

 

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 August
Western Australia:
001025 DOONGAN 9.0 (8.0, 16)

Quality control note: Data is complete, and has been visually checked by AWN for gross errors. Less obvious errors may remain.
Data is as received at 00:57EST, 28/10/2004.

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

33.8 WYNDHAM AERO N Kimberley WA
33.7 WYNDHAM N Kimberley WA
33.4 WARMUN E Kimberley WA
33.2 KALUMBURU MISSION N Kimberley WA
33.2 KIMBERLEY RES.STATION E Kimberley WA

+6.0   27.5 THARGOMINDAH POST OFFICE Far SW QLD
+5.9   24.1 SYDNEY AIRPORT AMO Sydney--east NSW
+5.8   25.8 OAKEY AERO Darling Downs E QLD
+5.8   22.5 NAROOMA RVCP South Coast NSW
+5.7   27.9 UNIVERSITY OF QUEENSLAND GATTON Brisbane/SE Coast QLD
+5.7   25.7 YAMBA PILOT STATION North Coast NSW
+5.7   23.4 SYDNEY (OBSERVATORY HILL) Sydney--east NSW

26.0 NORTHERN ENDEAVOUR Islands ISL
23.0 TROUGHTON ISLAND N Kimberley WA
23.0 COCOS ISLAND AIRPORT Islands ISL
22.9 MCCLUER ISLAND N Rivers NT
22.5 HORN ISLAND N Peninsula QLD

+8.4   14.4 ALICE SPRINGS AIRPORT N Plateau NT
+7.7   13.8 MARLA POLICE STATION NW Pastoral SA
+7.4   13.1 BROKEN HILL AIRPORT AWS Lower Darling NSW
+6.3   10.5 LOXTON RESEARCH CENTRE Murray Valley SA
+5.7   9.3 NOOJEE (SLIVAR) W Gippsland VIC

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

-1.7 MT HOTHAM Upper NE VIC
-1.6 THREDBO AWS Snowy Mtns NSW
-1.5 FALLS CREEK Upper NE VIC
0.0 MOUNT BULLER Upper NE VIC
0.0 MT BAW BAW W Gippsland VIC

-6.8   6.3 GEEVESTON (CEMETERY ROAD) Southeast TAS
-6.7   6.2 GROVE RESEARCH STATION Southeast TAS
-5.4   7.6 HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD) Southeast TAS
-5.3   8.1 HOBART AIRPORT Southeast TAS
-5.3   5.9 MAATSUYKER ISLAND LIGHTHOUSE Southeast TAS
-5.3   8.0 BULL BAY (LAURISTON) Southeast TAS
-5.3   7.7 BUSHY PARK (BUSHY PARK ESTATES) Derwent Valley TAS

-8.6 GLEN INNES AIRPORT AWS N Tablelands W NSW
-7.0 CHARLOTTE PASS (KOSCIUSKO CHALET) Snowy Mtns NSW
-6.5 WOOLBROOK (DANGLEMAH ROAD) NW Slopes S NSW
-6.2 TENTERFIELD (FEDERATION PARK) N Tablelands W NSW
-5.2 INVERELL (RAGLAN ST) N Tablelands W NSW

-10.9   0.8 KAIRI RESEARCH STATION N Coast--Barron QLD
-8.4   2.0 MOUNT ISA AERO Gulf Country QLD
-8.2   -6.2 TENTERFIELD (FEDERATION PARK) N Tablelands W NSW
-7.5   -1.1 AMBERLEY AMO Brisbane/SE Coast QLD
-7.1   -3.5 OAKEY AERO Darling Downs E QLD

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.

55.2 STRATHGORDON (GORDON POWER STATION) W Coast TAS
50.0 WARATAH (16 COLLINS STREET) W Coast TAS
45.6 CRADLE VALLEY (WALDHEIM) Central Plateau TAS
42.6 STRATHGORDON VILLAGE W Coast TAS
36.6 CRADLE MOUNTAIN VISITORS CENTRE Central Plateau TAS

TASMANIA
    Central Plateau
45.6 CRADLE VALLEY (WALDHEIM)
36.6 CRADLE MOUNTAIN VISITORS CENTRE
    W Coast
55.2 STRATHGORDON (GORDON POWER STATION)
50.0 WARATAH (16 COLLINS STREET)
42.6 STRATHGORDON VILLAGE

  Max+/- norm Min+/- normRain to 9am
BROOME AIRPORT 26.2 -4.1 13.5 -1.5 0.0
ALBANY AIRPORT 17.5 +1.5 9.0 +1.6 3.8
PERTH AIRPORT 19.5 +1.1 10.6 +2.6 1.0
KALGOORLIE-BOULDER AIRPORT 17.6 -0.8 5.4 -0.1 0.0
DARWIN AIRPORT 31.2 -0.1 16.7 -3.8 0.0
ALICE SPRINGS AIRPORT 25.7 +3.2 14.4 +8.4 0.0
ADELAIDE (KENT TOWN) 15.1 -1.4 11.1 +2.9 1.2
MOUNT GAMBIER AERO 12.9 -1.1 8.5 +3.1 6.8
CAIRNS AERO 26.8 +0.3 10.5 -6.9 0.0
TOWNSVILLE AERO 24.9 -1.1 8.8 -5.9 0.0
ROCKHAMPTON AERO 26.1 +1.4 8.6 -2.0 0.0
AMBERLEY AMO 27.5 +5.0 -1.1 -7.5 0.0
BRISBANE AERO 23.0 4.3 0.0
ARMIDALE AIRPORT AWS 15.1 0.4 0.0
COFFS HARBOUR MO 25.0 +5.3 2.1 -6.1 0.0
NEWCASTLE NOBBYS SIGNAL STATION AWS 20.7 +2.7 10.9 +1.7 0.0
SYDNEY (OBSERVATORY HILL) 23.4 +5.7 11.0 +2.1 0.0
PROSPECT DAM 22.5 +4.0 8.2 +1.4 0.0
WOLLONGONG UNIVERSITY 22.8 +4.6 7.9 -0.9 0.0
CANBERRA AIRPORT 14.8 +1.9 5.6 +4.7 0.0
WAGGA WAGGA AMO 12.4 -2.0 3.7 +0.1 0.0
MILDURA AIRPORT 20.1 +3.0 8.9 +3.6 0.0
EAST SALE AIRPORT 15.4 +0.4 5.2 +1.1 0.0
MELBOURNE REGIONAL OFFICE 14.5 -0.4 11.2 +4.6 0.0
LAVERTON RAAF 14.2 -0.6 9.8 +4.4 0.4
BALLARAT AERODROME 10.2 -1.2 5.6 +1.9 0.8
LAUNCESTON AIRPORT 9.1 -2.9 6.3 +3.3 0.6
HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD) 7.6 -5.4 4.6 -0.6 5.8

Downpours Gales & Gusts
High rainfall for periods of 6 hours or less. Highest wind gusts above 89km/h (storm force) or mean wind above 62km/h (gale force). Wind direction and mean windspeed shown in brackets.
VICTORIA
    W Coast
PORTLAND (CASHMORE AIRPORT)
10.2mm in 1 hr to 21:30 10.2mm/h
10.8mm in 1 hr to 22:00 10.8mm/h
TASMANIA
    Southeast
HOBART AIRPORT
17.6mm in 30 min to 00:30 35.2mm/h
17.6mm in 1 hr to 01:00 17.6mm/h
17.6mm in 30 min to 05:30 35.2mm/h
17.6mm in 1 hr to 05:30 17.6mm/h
17.6mm in 1 hr to 06:00 17.6mm/h
17.6mm in 30 min to 07:00 35.2mm/h
17.6mm in 30 min to 08:00 35.2mm/h
17.6mm in 1 hr to 08:30 17.6mm/h
HOBART (ELLERSLIE ROAD)
9.0mm in 21 min to 19:21 25.7mm/h
10.8mm in 1 hr to 20:00 10.8mm/h

SOUTH AUSTRALIA
    NW Pastoral
WOOMERA AERODROME : 83(260/ 63 ) at 15:00
    W Agricultural
CEDUNA AMO : 91(300/ 63 ) at 09:51
WUDINNA AERO : 78(280/ 65 ) at 12:49
NEPTUNE ISLAND : 87(250/ 69 ) at 16:52
CLEVE AERODROME : 82(270/ 67 ) at 13:52
    Northeast
YUNTA AIRSTRIP : 76(300/ 63 ) at 14:30
    Adelaide/Lofty
HINDMARSH ISLAND AWS : 100(320/ 67 ) at 01:00
QUEENSLAND
    Brisbane/SE Coast
CAPE MORETON LIGHTHOUSE : 76(360/ 65 ) at 18:30
NEW SOUTH WALES
    Illawarra
NOWRA RAN AIR STATION AWS : 95(310/ 61 ) at 15:30
BELLAMBI AWS : 104(320/ 76 ) at 18:30
MOSS VALE AWS : 91(300/ 50 ) at 13:33
    Goulburn/Monaro
CANBERRA AIRPORT : 78(320/ 67 ) at 12:06
BOMBALA AWS : 91(330/ 70 ) at 15:00
VICTORIA
    Mallee S
HOPETOUN AIRPORT : 72(280/ 63 ) at 16:02
    Upper NE
MOUNT BULLER : 106(350/ 74 ) at 02:30
MT HOTHAM AIRPORT : 95(310/ 50 ) at 10:30
FALLS CREEK : 85(340/ 63 ) at 02:30
OMEO : 96(340/ 59 ) at 10:31
    W Gippsland
WILSONS PROMONTORY LIGHTHOUSE : 93(280/ 39 ) at 15:11
    E Central
FAWKNER BEACON : 80(360/ 65 ) at 09:00
    N Central
KILMORE GAP : 82(360/ 67 ) at 01:30
    W Coast
COLAC (MT GELLIBRAND) : 82(350/ 69 ) at 10:30
TASMANIA
    E Coast
SWAN ISLAND : 83(320/ 70 ) at 12:37
ISLANDS
    Islands
HOGAN ISLAND : 93(310/ 65 ) at 10:46