RAIN RELIEF IN SIGHT Weekend torrent set to save our money
A DOWNPOUR of rain this weekend could delay the pumping of water from the Burdekin Dam by weeks and save Townsville ratepayers thousands of dollars.
An upper atmosphere trough is expected to bring up to 20mm of rain to Townsville tomorrow and 45mm on Sunday. The forecast comes after 73 bone- dry days, with the Ross River Dam level at 20.3 per cent capacity.
Townsville City Council Water and Waste Committee chairman Cr Paul Jacob said the council had budgeted to pump water from the Burdekin if the Ross River Dam dipped below 15 per cent.
Mr Jacob said the council had expected to hit that trigger point in late October.
“If we do get decent rain we could push that back into mid- November,” he said.
“Every week we delay saves a lot of money for resi- dents and ratepayers.” Cr Jacob said residents were less likely to water gardens after heavy downpours.
The city’s residents used about 95 megalitres of water each day last week.
Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Julian de Morton said the weather system would impact large swathes of the North, from the peninsula to the Capricornia district.
The bulk of the system is expected to concentrate over the Townsville area, with an 80 per cent chance of rain in Townsville tomorrow and 90 per cent on Sunday.
Mr de Morton said the forecast amount of rain could vary. “There could be more, there could be less,” he said.
Forecasting group Central and North Queensland Weather is also predicting a “substantial rain event from ( today) until Sunday”.
The last major rain event in Townsville was on May 19 when 120.8mm was recorded in the official gauge.
COOL CHANGE: Katie Sanders, 16, is looking forward to the forecast rain.