Intense thunderstorms wreak crop havoc

23 Mar, 2015 08:00 AM
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Perhaps the most widespread and intense thunderstorms of the storm season

UPDATED MIDDAY: GIANT hail, strong winds and very heavy rainfall pounded parts of northern New South Wales and southern Queensland on Saturday, causing structural damage, flooding and damage to crops.

A very humid onshore flow fed a deep inland trough, and combined with a jetstream and a cooling and destabilising upper atmosphere, leading to perhaps the most widespread and intense thunderstorms of the storm season.

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  • The talking point of the day was the giant hail that hit inland parts of northern NSW and southern Qld. Narrabri copped hail larger than cricket ball size, severely damaging cars and homes, injuring livestock and damaging crops a mere week before they were due to be picked.

    Chinchilla was also smashed by giant hail, with reports of hail as large as 12 centimetres, some of the largest ever recorded in Australia. While the large hail didn't reach the coast, slow-moving and moisture packed thunderstorms generated extremely heavy rainfall.

    On NSW's Mid North Coast, thunderstorms brought 177 millimetres to Redoak and 172mm to Lake Cathie in the 24 hours to 9am, much of which fell in a short amount of time.

    For the second day running, torrential thunderstorms also drenched parts of south-east Queensland on Sunday, bringing totals in excess of 100mm.

    Humid northeasterly winds have been feeding into a slow-moving trough, generating widespread and slow-moving thunderstorms.

    Brisbane copped a whopping 82mm to 9am on Monday, taking its two-day total to 150mm, the heaviest for March since 2001. This included a massive 26mm in just 10 minutes on Saturday, and 8mm in 10 minutes on Sunday.

    Coolangatta was also soaked, picking up 71mm to 9am including 9mm in 10 minutes.

    Noosa Heads and Bribie Island were among some locations that saw more than 100mm, recording 128mm and 104mm respectively.

    A high pressure ridge will strengthen today, gradually clearing thunderstorm activity out from the region with most places likely to be dry by the evening.

    Hot and humid conditions will develop from tomorrow, leading to the chance of further thunderstorm activity over south-east Qld from Wednesday until the end of the working week.

    Thunderstorms will continue to be prominent over northern NSW and Qld throughout the next week as the low pressure trough continues to linger, weakening as a cold front approaches from the west.

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    Sorry did i get it wrong..? Rankins Springs is still open..?!
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    No doubt a few frosted Freddies out there who will wish they had taken a closer look at the AGC
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    Matthew, I was wondering if you had followed up this story with the farmer after the whole