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Storms soak SA's Lower Eyre Peninsula and West Coast

Ben McBurney, Friday March 8, 2013 - 15:28 EDT

Slow-moving thunderstorms soaked South Australia's Lower Eyre Peninsula and West Coast yesterday, with some places seeing their heaviest rain in over a decade.

The highest totals were seen across the state's Lower Eyre Peninsula, with Coulta picking up 54mm, its heaviest rain since 2006. This is also Coulta's seventh heaviest fall in 129 years of records. Further north, Lock received 45mm, its heaviest rain since 1997, while Coles Point received 34mm, its heaviest March fall since 2006.

In the West Coast falls weren't as heavy, with rainfall amounts generally around 10mm. Ceduna still saw its heaviest March rainfall in four years, picking up 14mm.

Thunderstorms were slow-moving due to weak wind shear, causing rain to fall in very heavy bursts, bringing 12mm in just 10 minutes at Coles Point. This prompted severe thunderstorm warnings to be issued for flash flooding, as well as for damaging winds.

The cause of the storms was a broad low-lying trough being fed by humid northeasterly winds. This trough has also been responsible for the extended run of heat over the past week across South Australia.

The trough will linger over the next two days, with thunderstorms remaining a threat across much of South Australia until at least tomorrow. These storms will be mostly focused over the North West Pastoral, West Coast and Lower Eyre Peninsula again today. Tomorrow, storms are likely to spread into central parts of the state, with Adelaide also likely to see some of the action.

Thunderstorms remain a risk to produce flash flooding and damaging winds, with isolated falls up to 40mm possible.

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2013

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