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Sub-synoptic-scale features associated with extreme surface gusts during the South Australia storm of September 2016 – part I: characteristics of the event

Citation

Earl, N and Simmonds, I and Rudeva, I, Sub-synoptic-scale features associated with extreme surface gusts during the South Australia storm of September 2016 - part I: characteristics of the event, Weather pp. 1-8. ISSN 0043-1656 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2018 Royal Meteorological Society

DOI: doi:10.1002/wea.3385

Abstract

Winds are one of the major meteorological contributors to deaths, damage and insured losses in Australia. A ‘freak storm’ hit the state of South Australia on 28 September 2016, causing state‐wide blackouts and leaving 1.7 million people without power. In the first part of this two‐part study, we analyse this event and find that it was indeed extreme, deepening more explosively than all but two Adelaide‐affecting extratropical cyclones over the past 37 years and exhibiting the lowest central pressure. This generated hurricane force winds, with the central South Australia site of Neptune Island recording a gust of over 120kmh−1. We show that this storm potentially contained a sting jet. Such jets are well known as a cause of major damage across Europe, and this is the first study which investigates whether a sting jet can be produced over Australia. The main deepening of the system occurred over the Great Australian Bight, so if a sting jet did form and make it to the surface, it was not the cause of the state‐wide damage. However, the cyclone did contain numerous extreme gust‐producing mesoscale features, as explored in part II of this paper (Earl and Simmons, 2018).

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:extratropical cyclones, extreme surface winds, surface observations, mesoscale features, sting jets
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Atmospheric Sciences
Research Field:Meteorology
Objective Division:Environment
Objective Group:Natural Hazards
Objective Field:Natural Hazards in Antarctic and Sub-Antarctic Environments
UTAS Author:Earl, N (Mr Nick Earl)
ID Code:131012
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:CRC-Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems
Deposited On:2019-02-25
Last Modified:2019-03-07
Downloads:0

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