Weather News

Hail smashes southeast Queensland

Scott Morris, Monday November 18, 2019 - 13:23 EDT

Thunderstorms broke out in southeast Queensland on Sunday, dumping rain and large hail over the region.

Warm temperatures and instability from a broad low pressure trough triggered the afternoon thunderstorms. Multiple cells broke out, affecting the areas around Maroochydore, Brisbane and Surfers Paradise.

The first of the lightning strikes were seen around 1pm in the afternoon, and continued until they moved offshore at around 11pm that evening, but not before two other cells had developed.

The rainfall, although mostly isolated, was quite significant. In a ten minute period, Brisbane Airport recorded 10 mm and Beerburrum received 11 mm.

By the time the event was over, Garnet had received the highest rainfall total, with 56 mm recorded. Kandanga, Dagun and Elm Street, which had 39, 32 and 37 mm land in the rain gauge. Unfortunately for most other locations, rain was less than 15mm .

To make matters worse, lightning strikes can start their own fires and the winds generated by these storms can help the fire spread quicker. These conditions are definitely not ideal for the fire crews that are tirelessly working to control the threat.

These storms also produced giant hail, some the size of cricket balls. The combination of the rain and hail resulted in visibility being significantly reduced, down to 600m at Brisbane Airport at one point.

Looking forward to the week ahead, showers and storms are possible about eastern QLD with hot and unstable conditions. Later in the week, a more significant trough will approach from the west.

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