Brisbane has just had its heaviest rain since last summer, bringing an end to its driest start to January in a decade.
The city gained 44mm in the 23 hours to 8am Monday, its highest daily total since February 2011, when 69mm fell in a day.
Up until Sunday, Brisbane had only recorded five millimetres of rain in the previous 15 days, which made it the driest start to January since 2001. In that year, only one millimetre fell in the first 15 days of the month.
This recent drenching has been a result of humid easterly winds, a low pressure trough near the coast and a pool of cold air in the upper atmosphere. The combination brought widespread rain and some storms to a large area of southeast Queensland, from the Darling Downs to the Sunshine Coast to the Gold Coast. Many locations have seen 50 to 100mm since Sunday morning. Dayboro, to Brisbane’s north gained 100mm.
Some have had bigger rain than during last January’s floods. In the 24 hours to 9am Sunday, Stanthorpe, on the Darling Downs, gained 88mm, its highest rainfall in four years. It is also within 10mm of its monthly average. Goondiwindi’s 57mm is a two-year high and an eight-year high for January.
The pool of cold air is dissipating, causing the heaviest falls to become confined to the coastal fringe, where the low pressure trough is lingering.
Further daily falls of 50 to 100mm are possible between now and Wednesday, with potential for more than 100mm.