Change on the horizon. why wild weather continues for Darling Downs

The Darling Downs have had a month of wild weather, with heavy thunderstorms and high temperatures. Here’s what to expect for the rest of the week ahead.

Summer is just around the corner, but after a chaotic end to spring this year, residents have been warned to brace for very hot days ahead.

Harry Clark from the Bureau of Meteorology said this week had been a particularly active weather week for the Darling Downs, with lots of showers and thunderstorms.

On Wednesday afternoon, the senior meteorologist said a severe thunderstorm was possible over the Darling Downs with warnings of heavy rain, large hail and damaging winds, but the activity was expected to clear overnight.

Warm and sunny days are expected again on Thursday and Friday, with parts of Toowoomba City reaching highs of 30 degrees Celsius, and even higher in the Lockyer Valley, Goondiwindi and Chinchilla.

“November is a fairly active month for storms and is often the peak of the storm season for south-east Queensland, but this month has been particularly active so far,” Clark said.

“Typically we see these storms on a trough lasting a day or two, but this pattern really plays out all week long.”

WARNING: Severe thunderstorms are forecast for parts of the Darling Downs on Wednesday.
WARNING: Severe thunderstorms are forecast for parts of the Darling Downs on Wednesday.

The Darling Downs have already received between 100 and 200mm of rain in the month of November so far, creating much wetter conditions compared to last year when only around 25 to 50mm of rain fell.

While Mr Clark said the timing of the showers and thunderstorms in Toowoomba was notable, change was on the horizon for the rest of the year.

“The last three months leading up to October have been exceptionally dry, which is also a big difference from last year and is probably why November has been wetter,” he said.

“We are confident that temperatures will be warmer than average over the coming months, with the city of Toowoomba reaching the 27 degrees Celsius mark and further west above 30 degrees.”

The rain comes after residents of the Western Downs were evacuated in late October and homes were destroyed by devastating bushfires.

Mr Clark said while the rainfall would certainly help the situation by putting more moisture into the ground, it would not completely eliminate the chance of more fires if temperatures start to rise again.

Despite this, the climate outlook for the period December to February currently remains neutral, suggesting that it will not be a drier or wetter summer than normal at this stage.