Sunday, 16 November 2008

Big storm.

A few hours after posting the rant on Brisbane in summer, we were hit by the biggest cluster of storms for many years. It has taken a life, caused a welter of damage (including some buckled ceiling/water/mess at our place) and left approx 150, 000 homes without electricity.

It was a bloody hot day yesterday, and it felt hotter than it was mainly because it was the first hot one we've had this season. In actual fact it was only 31°-32°C (88°-90°F) but if you factor in the humidity (and my rant) it was pretty unpleasant.

Lou had asked me if we'd get a storm so I checked the BOM radar. There was a pretty nasty storm brewing but it really didn't look like it was going to have much of an impact here.

At the time it hit the Beaudesert/Gold Coast hinterland area it was huge, but as with many storms that rip over our way, the worst of it hits a small area and then weakens as it reaches the coast. Most storms also tend to build to their most intense a bit farther inland. We often find that by the time they reach us they have done their worst, in small pockets to the south and west.

Not this one. As you can possibly see from the little radar graphic above, the storm was massive, with severe cells of rain and electricity all over the south-east region (the green dot is where we live, right in the black nasty of the storm).

According to the radar, the storm was looking as if it’d just head meekly on out to sea, but then the wind changed. In the space of about half an hour a south-easter picked up and swung the bastidy thing in our direction. It was building in intensity all the while. This BOM data tells the story.

But the story is told best by this footage, taken on my crappy phone camera. In reality, the storm was a lot darker, but the lightning is the real star of the show (well, perhaps it gets second billing to Lou's cussing):

She's got a mouth on 'er, don't she?
So that's that. I doubt we'll see one like it for a while.
For those of you who'd like a comparison, below is a typical late afternoon view from our porch (with typical idiocy included):