Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water
Mount Isa weather radar for north west Queensland
12 November 2012
Mount Isa's new state-of-the-art Doppler weather radar will provide coverage to the densely populated town centre and a large area of Queensland's northwest for the first time.
Officially commissioning the new radar today, Senator Don Farrell, Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water, said it was a significant addition to the Bureau's national radar network.
"The new Mount Isa radar provides coverage from the Northern Territory border east, to the area between Cloncurry and Richmond, and from Boulia north, towards the gulf of Carpenteria," Senator Farrell said.
"The weather-watch radar provides 'nowcasting' capability to monitor severe weather events including floods, thunderstorms, and ex-tropical cyclones in northwest Queensland."
The $48 million Strategic Radar Enhancement Program (SREP) – funded through the 2009/10 Federal Budget – has now delivered new weather radars for Mount Isa, Hobart and Wollongong, with the Warruwi radar in the central Northern Territory coast also nearing completion.
The Mount Isa radar benefits from Doppler capability, which includes both rainfall and wind verification, enhancing the Bureau's capability in forecasting extreme weather events.
"The new radar will substantially improve the ability of communities to track weather, following forecasts and warnings delivered through the Bureau's website, and broadcast by local media," Senator Farrell said.
"The Mount Isa radar represents a significant improvement in Bureau's ability to make weather observations in northwest Queensland and to warn the community about the potential impacts of severe weather as these events unfold."
Through the research component of SREP, radar observations will be used in forecasting models to increase accuracy and capability in forecasting extreme weather events.
To view the data feed from the Mount Isa radar go to www.bom.gov.au/australia/radar.