Torrential rain in Central Australia was the major feature of a week which saw rain activity across large areas of Australia.
At the start of the week a developing tropical low was located over northwestern Australia, lying within the monsoon trough across northern Australia. Monsoonal showers and storms brought light to moderate falls to areas of northern Australia during the first half of the week, contracting into Queensland at the end of the week. A second surface trough extending from the south of the Northern Territory into southeastern Australia was associated with moderate showery falls over central Australia early in the week.
The tropical low brought very heavy, but generally isolated falls to areas of the Kimberley early in the week as it lay over land near Derby. As the low tracked southeast along the line of the surface trough, moist tropical air was drawn from the northwest into southeastern Australia, with moderate falls recorded over broad areas. Isolated parts of central Australia recorded very heavy falls, resulting in some flooding.
Showers continued over the Pilbara towards the end of the week, associated with a low in the area and a trough along the west coast. Showers also continued over the southeast mainland as the surface trough between the south of the Northern Territory and northern Victoria continued to draw in tropical moisture, and interacted with both a cut-off low on the east coast and an area of developing low pressure near southeast South Australia.
Rainfall totals in excess of 200 mm were recorded in parts of Kimberley district, the south of the Northern Territory and small parts of the north of Queensland’s Cape York Peninsula. Individual locations in the western Kimberley, Far Northern Queensland, Alice Springs District and Darwin–Daly District recorded falls between about 250 mm and 550 mm. The highest weekly total was 544 mm at Cape Leveque in the western Kimberley. Due to very heavy rainfall, the rain gauge at Cape Leveque had overflowed when read on the morning of the 8th, meaning that the true weekly total is unknown but higher than that observed.
Rainfall totals in between 50 mm and 200 mm were recorded more broadly across the western Kimberley; the Top End, eastern and southern Northern Territory; in Queensland’s Gulf Country and the Cape York Peninsula; across far southwestern Queensland, eastern South Australia, western New South Wales and small parts of western Victoria; and in southeastern New South Wales and scattered small areas of eastern Victoria.
Rainfall totals between 10 mm and 50 mm were recorded across the Pilbara coast and most remaining areas of the Northern Territory and northeastern half of South Australia, northern and southwestern Queensland, most of New South Wales apart from the inland northeast, all of Victoria, western and northern Tasmania. Small parts of Queensland’s east coast also recorded weekly totals between 10 mm and 50 mm.
Western Australia south of the Pilbara, southwestern South Australia, a large part of inland southern Queensland and much of eastern Tasmania recorded little or no rainfall for the week.
Highest weekly totals by State
|State||Highest||2nd Highest||3rd Highest|
|Qld||Lockhart River Airport
|NSW/ACT||Fowlers Gap AWS
|Robertson (Caalong Street)
|Careys Peak (Barrington Tops)
|Vic||Lima East (Charnwood)
|Seven Creeks at Strathbogie
|Strahan (Andrew Street)
*The rain gauge at Cape Leveque overflowed on the 8th in heavy rain.
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