Monthly Archives: March 2016

Heavy overnight downpour Wollongong – 26 and 27 March 2016

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Overnight Saturday and into early Sunday 26 and 27 March, a portion of Wollongong city on the Illawarra Coast south of Sydney experienced a downpour lasting at least 3 hours that produced as much as 177 mm of rain. At least 3 weather station rain gauges captured the event as follows:-

Rixons Pass - 177 mm.
Russell Vale Colliery - 174 mm.
Bellambi - 118 mm.

A rain gauge at nearby Balgownie recorded 62 mm of rain during the event.

This event would have impacted the suburbs of Corrimal, Russell Vale, Woonoona and possibly Bulli before the storm moved out to sea. Much of southern Wollongong had little or no rainfall which shows how localised the event was. A rain gauge at Bellambi shows the following:-

10 pm - 7.6 mm.
10.30 pm - 32.8 mm.
11 pm - 67 mm (This shows almost 60 mm of rain in 1 hour or 1 mm per minute).
12 midnight - 101 mm.
1 am - 117 mm.

This would have caused localised flash flooding within a confined area.

The rainfall plot for Wollongong taken from the "Water and the Land" Bureau of Meteorology and dated 9 am 27/3/2016 shows where the event occurred. It is difficult to identify due to its localised nature but it is an event that has been captured by three rain gauges within the local area.

Heavy coastal showers affect eastern Sydney – 21 and 22 March 2016

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Following a recent dry spell spanning at least 6 weeks, Sydney's eastern suburbs have been affected by some heavy rainfall from coastal showers. The falls have only impacted coastal suburbs to approximately 10 km inland. Further inland, rainfall totals taper away sharply.

For the 24 hours to 9 am 21/3/2016, the following rainfall figures have been recorded:-

Randwick - 95 mm.
Manly - 92 mm.
Cromer - 72 mm.
Mona Vale - 69 mm.
Bondi - 64 mm.
Little Bay - 63 mm.

For the 24 hours to 9 am 22/3/2016, the following rainfall figures have been recorded:-

Little Bay - 51 mm.
Randwick - 41 mm.

Accumulative totals:- It can be seen that Randwick has had 135 mm and Little Bay has had 114 mm for the 2 day period making it quite wet within a small region of Sydney. Such large totals have not occurred elsewhere but it does show the wide variation of rainfall that has occurred within a small area within Sydney.

The rainfall plot for Sydney for the 24 hours to 9 am 21/3/2016 is attached for reference taken from the Water and the Land “Bureau of Meteorology”.

Southern Australia early March heatwave 1 to 12 March 2016

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Another heatwave is unfolding across Southern Australia during the first few days of March. This heatwave is likely to be the last for the summer 2015/2016 season.

The heatwave is covering a large portion of inland Australia and several inland centres are experiencing temperatures in the high 30s and low 40s. There are signs that the current heat will be waning in intensity late in the week as temperatures start to moderate. However for the time being, it is expected to be quite hot at least until Friday or Saturday in some centres.

As shown in the satellite photo of southern Australia dated 6 March 2016, a few clouds exists across the inland but for the most part, clear skies predominate. It is also dry again especially across more northern areas.

I have recently flown across the wheat sheep belt of Central New South Wales and it is clear that the regions near Forbes and Parkes are incredibly dry and in need for desperate rain.

Some exceptional temperatures recorded for early March 2016 include:-

1 - Hay - It has reached 40C on two consecutive days being 39C on the 4/3, 41.1C on the 5/3 and 40.5C on the 6/3.

2 - Deniliquin - 39.4C on the 5/3/2016 and 39.1C on the 6/3/2016.

3 - Fowlers Gap - 39C on the 6/3/2016.

4 - Albury - 38.2C on the 5/3/2016.

The worst of the heat is affecting the inland regions but it is noted that much of Western Sydney has enjoyed 5 days in a row where maximum temperatures have reached into the low 30s.

Some forecast maximum temperatures for Monday to Saturday include:-

Albury - Mon (38C), Tue (38C), Wed (37C), Thu (36C), Fri (36C) and Sat (35C).
Blacktown - Mon (32C), Tue (31C), Wed (35C), Thu (33C), Fri (32C) and Sat (31C).
Broken Hill - Mon (39C), Tue (39C), Wed (38C), Thu (38C), Fri (37C) and Sat (34C).
Cobar - Mon (38C), Tue (37C), Wed (37C), Thu (37C), Fri (37C) and Sat (37C).
Dubbo - Mon (35C), Tue (35C), Wed (35C), Thu (35C), Fri (35C) and Sat (34C).
Goulburn - Mon (33C), Tue (31C), Wed (34C), Thu (32C), Fri (31C) and Sat (30C).
Ivanhoe - Mon (40C), Tue (40C), Wed (40C), Thu (40C), Fri (39C) and Sat (39C).
Penrith - Mon (34C), Tue (33C), Wed (36C), Thu (34C), Fri (33C) and Sat (33C).
Tibooburra - Mon (39C), Tue (38C), Wed (39C), Thu (39C), Fri (38C) and Sat (38C).
Wagga Wagga - Mon (37C), Tue (38C), Wed (37C), Thu (37C), Fri (37C) and Sat (36C).

As shown, there is evidence of maximum temperatures moderating towards the end of the week which is suggesting some form of a change approaching or passing through. Hot weather in early March is common but generally after the middle of the month as Autumn takes more effect, a cooling trend will commence.


Bureau of Meteorology 6/3/2016 - Water and the Land maximum temperature plot.
NASA (MODIS Worldview) Southern Australia acquired 6/3/2016.