Northern coastal centres in for a wet Christmas

Posted December 21, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 10.25.27 am

It looks like it is going to be a wet Christmas Day for some parts of north Queensland.

Bureau of Meteorology modelling is showing 400mm falls just off the coast of Townsville. Bowen to Ingham and Burketown and Normanton are set for falls of between 100mm and 200mm.

That’s around four to eight inches in imperial measurements.

It’s still pretty scarce in the west though as this graph from the BOM morning suggests.
Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 10.25.27 am

Today’s forecast.

A cloud band extending from central Australia through NSW to the Tasman Sea is associated with a broad low pressure trough and cold front that crossed southeast Australia. Embedded thunderstorms are evident in this cloud band mostly over the NT. A large grouping of thunderstorms over the interior of WA is being triggered by a nearby low pressure system and trough. High level cloud streaming over southern WA is due to an upper level disturbance. A monsoon trough is present over the far north of the country and is responsible for the increased cloudiness over the tropics as well as increased shower and thunderstorm activity. A ridge of high pressure over the east coast of the continent is maintaining mostly clear skies over NSW and south eastern QLD. Although some patchy low level cloud is also being directed by this ridge over the Queensland coast. Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 10.22.34 am

Otherwise from the Bureau

Mostly neutral start to 2016, but reduced wet season rains likely in the north

  • For most of Australia the chance of above or below average January rainfall is roughly equal, with below average rainfall more likely in patches of western WA, the far tropical north and the southeast.
  • The first three months of 2016 are likely to be drier than average across parts of northern Australia, and the southeast mainland. Conversely, southeast Queensland and Tasmania are likely to be wetter than average.
  • Current climate influences include a combination of a strong El Niño in the Pacific and very warm Indian Ocean temperatures.
  • Historical outlook accuracy for January to March rainfall is moderate over most of Australia, except southern parts of WA, and parts of the interior where accuracy is low to very low.

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