March rainfall highest on record
WEATHER WATCH: Alice River weather nut Des Barr casts an eye over Townsville skies as more rain threatens to dump on the city, capping off our wettest March on record. A whopping 696.2mm of the wet stuff fell in Townsville for the month
>> Report: page 5
T O W N S V I L L E ’ S M a r c h r a i nf a l l r e c o r d s wil l b e smashed today as more deluges are tipped to add to the whopping 696.2mm which has fallen so far.
Bureau o f Meteorol o g y forecaster Julian Romanik said the only other figure to come close to matching the d o wnpour s i nce r e c o r d s started, was a fall of 682.8mm in 1990.
The unforgiving rain, including a mammoth 400mm fall over the past two days, has caused havoc for the region, particularly south of Townsville, where the Bruce Highway at Proserpine was cut and a landslide threatened homes at the Whitsunday hamlet of Hideaway Bay.
Weatherzone meteorologist Brett Dutschke said Proserpine had been one of the wettest places, with about 450mm in the past 48 hours – the biggest falls since January 1991.
Further north, Bowen had about 400mm, its highest two-day total since February 1991.
This recent downpour is on top of an already wet month, in which it has rained on 23 days, about 10 more than normal.
Proserpine has had more than 800mm in March and B o w e n h a d m o r e t h a n 600mm, making it the wettest March in both towns in at least 20 years. ‘‘ Heavy rain is still in the area and it only looks like easing significantly from tomorrow,’’ Mr Dutschke said yesterday.
‘‘ An unstable area of converging winds will slowly edge north and take the focus of rain closer to Townsville in the next few days and further north from the weekend.
‘‘ More than 200mm is possible in these parts. There’s not a huge amount of relief ahead in the Bowen, Proserpine and Mackay area with another 100mm still possible.
‘‘ Once the heavy rain eases in the next day or two, frequent showers are still likely into next week in fresh southeasterly winds."
Whitsunday Mayor Mike Brunker said although overnight rain caused more landslides in the Hideaway Bay area yesterday, residents were not affected.
Cr Brunker said geological engineers were expected to arrive at the scene late yesterday afternoon, after having to fly to Townsville and then travel south due to flood-blocked roads.
Mr Romanik said the rain heading towards Townsville would not let up until about Tuesday next week.
He said while flooding was a concern over roads south of Townsville, trouble-prone areas north of the city like Ingham should not be a problem unless the rain continues relentlessly and soaks the ground.