24.9°C 03:00 pm

Not just soaked, but extra cold

Tuesday, 8th February, 2011

Stephens Creek is more of a river these days after close to 80mm fell on Broken Hill and surrounds over the weekend Stephens Creek is more of a river these days after close to 80mm fell on Broken Hill and surrounds over the weekend

By Kurtis Eichler

Close to 80mm of rain was dropped on the city over the weekend, bringing to an end the dreaded humidity and creating a new record for the coldest February day the city has ever felt.

During the heavy rain which hit the city Saturday afternoon, 14mm was recorded by Weatherzone and a further 62.6mm was recorded the following day.

In a month that has seen a mixed bag of weather events such as thunderous supercells and uncomfortable humidity, more than 115mm of rain has been recorded for the month of February, bringing the year's total for the city to 243.2.

The rain also seen the Adelaide road cut, leaving local music lovers who had paid to attend the Big Day Out stranded in the city at the weekend.

The Barrier Highway to Adelaide has reopened, the road to Wilcannia is open with caution, and the Mutawintji Road is still closed.

The Silverton to Umberumberka road is also closed due to recent flooding.

Local weather expert, Philip Mew, said "in a manner of speaking" he couldclassify the weekend downpour as a storm.

"She was quite a substantial storm when you think about it," he told the BDT.

He said the 62.6mm of rainfall was a good result for this area.

Mr Mew said the storm was "part and parcel" of Cyclone Yasi moving off to the north of the city, with showers being sent down the jet stream.

However, the extreme dumping was not unusual for this time of year, with Mr Mew saying 12 months ago the city also received a high amount of rainfall.

"We've had bigger dumps than that for February," he said

Sunday saw a maximum of 17 degrees and a low of 15 degrees, which was the lowest maximum for February on record.

Country Water's Group Manager Travis Nadge said Stephens Creek Reservoir was "still overflowing" and would continue to do so for the next several days.

Local SES deputy controller, Darren Larkin, said the local branch had 30 call-outs since Wednesday to houses with leaking roofs and flooding.

Mr Larkin also said numerous calls were made to houses which had their sheet metal rooves blown off.

Close to two feet of water also trapped one man along the Tibooburra Road.

"Police eventually got to him," Mr Larkin said.

With temperatures set to stay low over the week, Mr Mew said the city should expect some slight rain within four to six days.

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