Wet summer ends hot 'noughties'
THE Gympie region’s soggy start to summer looks set to continue over the weekend with a severe weather notification issued yesterday warning residents in northern parts of the Wide Bay and Burnett districts to expect possible flash flooding today.
And with up to six cyclones and above average rainfall predicted for the next few months, authorities are urging people to make plans now to try and minimise the potential impact of severe weather events on their properties.
Central Queensland was awash yesterday and major highways cut in a number of places after torrential rain lashed the region.
Falls up to 200mm were recorded in the Gemfields area, with the town of Sapphire isolated and the local caravan park forced to evacuate.
Gympie region weather watchers are keeping an eye on a low forming offshore north of Fraser Island. The trough or low is forecast to move south over the Wide Bay late today.
Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Vikash Prasad said to expect more rain on the way with indications for the next three months leaning toward a wetter than average rainfall.
But while it may have been a wet spring for much of the state, the 2010 rainfall total for the Gympie region is well below the highest on record with recent drought still fresh in many people’s minds.
Up to yesterday, the region had received 982.4mm compared to the wettest year of 1893 when 2242.9mm was received.
Few years in the past century have come close to 1893. The wettest year in the past 100 was 1956 with a 1783mm total.
And Australian scientists examining the latest global weather data say the noughties will close as the hottest 10-year period on record.
The United Nations’ weather agency says 2010 is “almost certain” to rank as one of the hottest three years ever while the past decade is already the warmest period since climate data began in 1850.
The World Meteorological Organisation said the past 12 months have been marked by dramatic weather events across the globe and that sea and land surface air temperatures for 2010 are currently estimated at 0.55C above the 1961-1990 annual average.