Temps hit 40C west of M1 as spring scorcher sparks severe storm threat

5PM UPDATE: A LIGHTNING-active thunderstorm is currently sweeping over central parts of the Gold Coast.

A heavy burst of rain and wind is likely as the small cell moves east off the coast over Surfers Paradise.

Small pea-size hail has been recorded at Mudgeeraba, Merrimac and Robina.


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Locations which may be affected include Nerang, Carrara, Robina, and coastal suburbs between Southport and Miami.

The storm was first detected over Canungra and Mt Tamborine in the Gold Coast hinterland around 3.30pm.

NOTE: All thunderstorms generally produce lightning, and many produce gusty winds, brief heavy showers and hail. Severe Thunderstorm Warnings will only be issued if storms are expected to produce any of the following:

  • Damaging wind gusts (90 km/h or more)
  • Large hail (2cm diameter or more)
  • Very heavy rainfall (conducive to flash flooding)
  • Tornadoes

EARLIER: PARTS of the Gold Coast are sweltering through 40 degree heat this afternoon as a surface trough sweeps across the state.

The trough – currently situated over Queensland’s southern interior – is generating hot, dry and gusty conditions as it pushes east across the southeast today and tomorrow.

The forecast has prompted the Bureau of Meteorology to issue a Fire Weather Warning, with extreme fire danger expected in the Darling Downs and Granite Belt today, and severe fire danger in the Maranoa, Warrego, and Southeast Coast districts.

The Rural Fire Service Queensland advises that fires may be unpredictable, uncontrollable and fast-moving.

By 2pm, the mercury had already soared above 40 degrees along parts of the Gold Coast hinterland, with similar temperatures recorded in suburbs west of the M1 including Nerang and Mudgeeraba.

There’s slight relief for those along the beach, with temperatures easing back to around 24C at Surfers Paradise this afternoon after peaking at 30C around 10.30am.

The Bureau has also warned of potentially severe thunderstorms this afternoon and evening.

312pm Weather Radar

3.12PM WEATHER RADAR courtesy WeatherZonePRO

At 3pm, dozens of small but fierce storm cells were detected on weather radar approximately 60 kilometres west of the Gold Coast.

They are part of a much larger storm band stretching 1,500km from Mt Isa to the southeast corner of the state.

The activity is moving towards the east and is expected to slam into the coast sometime this afternoon and evening.

Jeff Higgins from Higgins Storm Chasing the largest storm chasing team in Australia – says thunderstorms are likely to produce gusty winds and frequent dangerous lightning sparking the risk of bushfire.

NOTE: All thunderstorms generally produce lightning, and many produce gusty winds, brief heavy showers and hail. Severe Thunderstorm Warnings will only be issued if storms are expected to produce any of the following:

  • Damaging wind gusts (90 km/h or more)
  • Large hail (2cm diameter or more)
  • Very heavy rainfall (conducive to flash flooding)
  • Tornadoes

The Rural Fire Service Queensland advises you to:

  • Check your bushfire survival plan – Now.
  • Monitor the fire and weather situation in any way you can through www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au and www.bom.gov.au, television or radio.
  • Call Triple Zero if you see a fire.
  • For information on Fire Bans and how to Prepare. Act. Survive. Visit the Rural Fire Service web page at www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au or call the hotline on 1800 020 440.

EXTREME FIRE DANGER: The Rural Fire Service Queensland advises that if you are in an area of Extreme Fire Danger, leaving is the only option for your survival. If you plan to leave finalise your options and leave early on the day. A well prepared and well constructed home may not be safe.

SEVERE FIRE DANGER: The Rural Fire Service Queensland advises that if you are in an area of Severe Fire Danger, leaving is the safest option for your survival. If you plan to leave finalise your options and leave early on the day. Only stay if your home is well prepared and well constructed and you can actively defend it. Prepare for the emotional, mental and physical impact of defending your property – if in doubt, leave early.

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