Weather, Wind & Tides
Weather Wise Safety
How to Read Weather Maps
How to Read Weather Maps (NZ Metservice)
How to read the weather map (Sunday Mail, Book of Weather (pdf))
Queenslanders are a pretty resilient bunch when it comes to natural disasters, and as the most disaster-prone state in the country, we need to make sure we’re ready for whatever comes our way.
Like … tropical cyclones.
Although we’ve been through it all before, it pays to reset and check that you’re prepared when the first storm of the season hits. Plan ahead now and cross off this storm-ready checklist to safeguard your home and family.
7NEWS.com.au and Suncorp
See original article on 7News
Weather conditions influence the size, intensity, speed and predictability of bushfires and how dangerous they can be.
Lightning, the thunderbolt from mythology, has long been feared as the great weapon of the gods … Today, scientific rather than mystical techniques are used to explain lightning with experimental procedures replacing intuitive concepts. Yet, we remain in awe of lightning which still shines with its mystery, and rightly so. Each year, lightning is responsible for the deaths of a hundred or so people, injuries to several hundred more, and millions of dollars in property damage … Learn More
Suggested by the team at Lake Jennings BSA Troop 325
Flooding in Queensland
Useful resources from the QLD Government.
Floods can occur almost anywhere in Queensland and can rise over days, or in minutes in a ‘flash flood’. Don’t enter floodwater—even water 30cm deep could sweep you off your feet.
After heavy rain in your area…
- Keep informed about weather patterns and weather forecasts and act quickly on any advice
- Stay away from rivers, creeks and drains
- Get to higher ground
- Never try to drive, ride or walk through floodwater.
Our Australian landscape provides a beautiful backdrop for bushwalking, camping, and other outdoor adventures. But when you’re close to nature, you’re exposed to the elements—and the weather in Australia can be extreme. So how can you know your weather better and make the most of your bushwalking or camping trip?
Have you ever looked at the recorded temperature for your area and thought ‘It felt colder than that’? You could be right. Our instruments measure ‘ambient temperature’—how warm the air is in the shade and sheltered from the wind. But by taking into account wind and humidity we also calculate ‘apparent temperature’—how warm you might feel. There can be a considerable difference between the two.
Very little of our continent is free from fires. Dry spells create a high fire risk, particularly after good rain has encouraged lush growth. Even arid regions experience scrub fires in years when good wet season rains are followed by a long dry spell.
Weather systems work differently across Australia’s temperate and tropical regions. Severe bushfire conditions are influenced by a combination of these systems, but in most cases by hot, dry winds blowing from central Australia. The dry summer months are the danger time for southern Australia, while northern Australia is at risk during winter.
Cyclones are a part of life for people in northern Australia and have the potential to threaten lives and cause large-scale destruction. The official cyclone season lasts from November to April.
Heatwaves kill far more people than natural disasters like bushfires, cyclones and floods. Adequate preparation is essential, especially for people at high risk: the elderly, babies, young children, people with health and mobility problems. Be Prepared
Weather is essential for the safety, comfort, and enjoyment of outdoor adventure activities. Organisers should know where to get weather information and understand what it means to safely plan and manage their activity.
This guide provides tips on how to get weather information, and a quick guide to weather hazards and warnings relevant to land-based outdoor adventure activities (such as bushwalking and camping).
Bureau of Meteorology
This document provides information and commonly agreed procedures for planning and responding to severe weather in the outdoors that involve led activities with dependent participants in Australia. The nature and intensity of severe weather can vary across Australia and local resources should be consulted in each case. Severe weather conditions may result from various weather events and can be defined as any destructive weather phenomenon.
The best risk management plans and processes will avoid the conduct of outdoor activities in any location where a forecasted severe weather event is likely to occur. Operators should have a code of conduct to protect their participants and this is an important consideration of your organisation’s processes. This document will help you plan for any unforeseen events, variable conditions and mitigate against injury or death.
The document will also enhance the capacity of organisations and leaders to develop and implement consistent policies and support decision-making to continue, modify or postpone planned activities. It should be read in conjunction with the activity specific Australian Adventure Activity Standards (AAAS) and reviewed annually.
This document is to be used by the industry in planning for severe weather and built into the activity’s risk management plan. It is not intended as a resource for the industry to be used whilst facing severe weather issues during activity.
Spending time outdoors with the family can make for an enjoyable excursion. Whether you are at a park playing on playground equipment, hiking, bird-watching, swimming, or even just hanging out in the backyard, the fresh air can be pleasantly invigorating. However, the weather can change in an instant. You may have little warning before severe weather rolls in. Severe weather can involve thunderstorms, lightning, hail, tornadoes, flash floods, high winds, and even hurricanes. Seasonal weather may also include heat waves and blizzards. Depending on your location, you may also need to be prepared for earthquakes. With safety as a priority, it’s crucial to monitor the weather so you are prepared for any type of weather condition, especially when you are outdoors.
Recommended by Connie Lanny
Check out this new series of 3D disaster animations Get Ready QLD has developed in partnership with the Bureau of Meteorology.
These hyper-realistic videos place viewers at the centre of Queensland’s most frequent natural disasters – severe storms, cyclones and flooding – highlighting the risks of extreme weather.
See online here: Extreme Weather Video Animations
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have developed an intricate understanding of the environment over many thousands of years.
EWN is dedicated to the provision of a multi-channel weather alert system
Queensland Tide Tables
The Queensland Tide Tables publication contains tidal predictions for the Queensland standard ports as well as instructions for calculating tides at many other intermediate locations. It also includes additional tidal information such as the highest tides of the year, locations of the standard ports as well as rise and set tables for the sun and moon.
Want to know what the Australian coastline may look like in 2100?
Coastal Risk Australia (CRA) has been created to show you what the Australian coast may look like in 2100. It is an interactive map tool designed to communicate coastal inundation associated with sea level rise to the year 2100.
MetEye is able to show maps of weather observations and the official forecasts produced by the Bureau of Meteorology. This is quite different to other map based systems which often show automatically generated, computer model data. MetEye forecast maps have been adjusted by our meteorologists to better represent expected weather. See the “About MetEye” page for further information
Find all about the weather on Wikipedia
Improve your understanding of tropical cyclone categories and their impacts. This video explains what the different tropical cyclones categories are, the hazards involved and the potential damage a tropical cyclone can cause. See http://www.bom.gov.au/cyclone for all current tropical cyclone warnings for the Australian region.
Weather Related Articles
Weather plays a huge and crucial role on every adventure. It can determine where, when, and how an adventure plays out and if you’re not prepared, weather can be a trip-ruiner. Here’s how to read the weather like a pro while out on adventures.
‘There’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing’
We are Explorers
What It’s Like and How to Stay Safe
Is it safe to camp during a thunderstorm?
Yes… And no.
There is no shortage of facts that tell you things like, “the chance of getting struck by lightning is 1 in a million.”
However, that doesn’t mean getting struck by lightning doesn’t happen. In certain areas, the chance of getting hit by lightning is much higher. And camping in an open field with tent poles practically calling out to the lightning certainly doesn’t help the situation.
On top of lightning, there are also these risks of camping in a thunderstorm:
- Widow-maker trees: These are tree branches which fall down onto your tent and potentially kill you. Never pitch your tent under dead or weak branches!
- Tent being blown away: Some tents aren’t very aerodynamic. The wind will catch these tents and blow them away like a kite. WITH YOU INSIDE OF IT.
- Getting drenched: Getting wet usually isn’t a big deal. But if you are wet and all your gear gets wet, you could end up hypothermic.
Why lightning, one of the most deadly weather phenomena, will never be seen in a forecast
Electrical storms are one of nature’s most spectacular displays, but they can also have catastrophic consequences — triggering bushfires, destroying buildings, disrupting air traffic and in the worst-case scenario, causing death.
So why aren’t we warned about lightning in a weather forecast?
Monitoring the weather, understanding the threat and making the call to evacuate for the safety of players and fans is no easy task, and it’s one that venue managers must take seriously.
Spring is in the air! But only for those of us below the Tropic of Capricorn.
Only a few parts of the world experience the classic four seasons of spring, summer, autumn and winter. Many parts of the world get only two or even one. So, what’s going on?
Weather for Kids
There is a huge range of information on the BOM website which may help you with your studies. It will be easier for you to find the information you need if you search using words that are meteorological terms – for example, a report of the weather is called an “observation”. Have a look through the groups of information and links listed in this page. Each has a description of what you will find in that information group. You can use the glossary and weather words to help you understand some of the meteorological terms.
If you are unable to find the information you need, talk to your teacher or lecturer. You can also ask them to provide feedback to us suggesting further tips we can include to help students.
- Weather is the measurement of what is happening in the atmosphere at a particular time. It involves the sun and temperature, rain and humidity, wind direction and force.
- Climate is the expected weather based on the average weather in a particular place over many years.
If the lights go out, just remember these top ten rules for playing it safe during a storm.
1. Have a storm safety kit handy. You can make your own kit at home with help from a grown-up.
2. Stay inside during thunderstorms and blizzards. Lightning, wind and ice can damage power lines, making them very dangerous. It’s also important to stay off the phone and computer during a storm too.
3. Use flashlights instead of candles. Using candles during a storm is a big fire hazard.
4. Don’t open the refrigerator or freezer unless you absolutely need to. Keeping the door closed as much as possible will make the food last longer.
5. If your power goes out, have a grown-up notify the power company right away. The more calls or notifications they get, the faster they can find and fix the problem.
6. Don’t try to use a gas appliance to keep warm. Using a gas appliance the wrong way can cause deadly carbon monoxide. Bundle up in layers of clothes instead.
7. Ask a grown-up to unplug as many appliances as possible. This will help prevent damage when the power comes back on.
8. Don’t play near portable generators or heaters. This equipment is very dangerous, so stay far away.
9. Stay away from damaged or downed power lines. Even utility workers can’t tell if a power line is energized just by looking at it.
10. Remind grown-ups to watch out for power lines when they’re cleaning up outside. If power lines are running through damaged trees, call the electric company for help.
Alliant Energy Kids (US)
Storm & Emergency Guide for Kids
If you have ever been in a storm, you know that they’re pretty scary! A storm can be loud and dark, and sometimes, they seem like they’ll never end. When a storm gets really bad, it can be an emergency situation. In an emergency, you could easily get hurt. Most of the time, a parent, teacher, or guardian is there to keep kids safe. But if you know what to do, you can be super-helpful in keeping yourself and your family safe … read more
Emergency Essentials (US)
These games and resources will teach children about:
- hazards and emergencies
- disaster preparation
- personal safety
- the role of emergency services.
Recommend a Resource
Do you have any interesting or useful weather related resources or links to share?
Let us know by Recommending a Resource