STORM CHASING 2004-2005

Isolated storms had been forecast for Brisbane and surrounds for most of this week. There was a little activity off-shore, but today delivered a hailstorm that was incredible not because of the size of the stones, but the volume of them. Brisbane is located in the sub-tropics and while hailstorms are not uncommon here, the more severe ones usually occur during the summer months. The intensity of this storm was mainly due to the unusually cold temperatures in the mid-levels of the atmosphere.

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I was in Toombul on the north side as the cell approached Brisbane.

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It wasn't long before lightning became visible.

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This was a very slow moving storm, making it a pleasure to photograph the lightning, but eventually it arrived and dumped rain and hail. One and a half to two centimetres was probably the largest of the stones I saw.

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After hearing about the incredible hail in the city, I was amazed that hail was still falling when the storm arrived here in Toombul. The lightning continued.

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It was after the storm headed out to sea that I'd heard about the hail in town, so I had to go and see it for myself. This is Countess St near the corner of Roma Street, just under the railway bridge.

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A park on Milton Rd near Toowong:

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At work, internal guttering had failed causing water to leak everywhere over desks and onto computers.

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The following three images are are taken immediately after the storm from a Brisbane City Council traffic camera and are copyright Brisbane City Council.

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Here's the rain radar as the hail was dumped on the CBD:

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The hail was moved off the road by a council truck.


The following morning at my work as a sound engineer for Triple M, I was pulled into the studio unwillingly:

It was a chilly night and the next morning at 7:30 the hail drifts had hardly melted. This is again on the corner of Countess & Roma streets:

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I left work at 4pm (22 hours after the hail fell!) and as I drove by the same spot it seemed to be getting dirtier, but there was still little sign of it melting.

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Six days later (Wed 25 May) and looking more like a pile of leaves, the hail still not melted completely!

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However, on the seventh day, it had finally disappeared.