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Rockhampton weather office struck by lightning during storm

IT WAS back to the old days for Benj Blunt and the Rockhampton meteorology team after its tower was rendered incapacitated by a lightning strike on Tuesday night.

The duty weather observer said the automatic weather station base was struck during a storm at around 9.20pm.

"That put out our systems for a little while so we are back to recording our observations, until it gets fixed, the old manual way," he said.

"Coming out and reading the dry bulb and wet bulb rain gauges and doing the conversions in the office ... it takes us back to a time pre-computers really.

"We don't mind, it's a bit of a change."

Mr Blunt said it was the first time anyone in the office had seen a piece of equipment get struck by lighting in the 15 years they had been working there.

And he said the storm activity wasn't over yet.

"The rain and the storm activity will probably hang around for Friday and Saturday at this stage, possibly even a little bit on Sunday, and come early next week we are expecting it to dry up," he said.

"There is decent chance of some falls in the area, possibly in the 50mm to 100mm mark around Rockhampton, and even higher than that as you go towards the coast, in cumulative totals over the next couple of days.

"A change is coming, a dry change."

Mr Blunt said it was unlikely for major flooding to occur over the weekend, but minor flooding could potentially be a reality.

The automatic weather station was expected to be back in service yesterday.

Topics:  bureau of meteorology, lightning, weather, wildweather




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