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Confusion surrounding the Redbank Plains weather station

AWAITING REPAIRS: The Redbank Plains weather station which collects data for research, but is out of action.
AWAITING REPAIRS: The Redbank Plains weather station which collects data for research, but is out of action. Contributed

CONFUSION surrounding the Redbank Plains weather station was cleared up after LNP claims it was to be a state-of-the-art forecasting station were shot down.

Shadow Climate Action and Environment Minister Greg Hunt, flanked by LNP candidates for the federal seats of Oxley and Blair, scoffed at the Labor government's failure to deliver a doppler radar to the station.

Mr Hunt said the radar predicted severe thunderstorms and hail.

Blair candidate Teresa Harding said: "We are about to commence storm season in Queensland and we need this vital infrastructure that gives us vital information on forecasting and predicting weather patterns."

However, Blair MP Shayne Neumann and Bureau of Meteorology assistant research director Peter May confirmed the claims were not correct.

Both confirmed the station was never meant for forecasting and always was intended for research only.

Mr May said the site was a specialist research radar facility operated by the Bureau of Meteorology and the National Centre for Atmospheric Research in the United States.

"South-east Queensland's weather forecasting and warning services have not been affected by this outage, and are well served by an advanced high-resolution doppler radar in Mt Stapylton and another radar in Marburg," he said. "Data collected when the research radar was operational is currently being used in a range of research projects by the Centre for Australian Weather and Climate Research."

The station is now not operational and is awaiting a specially-engineered replacement part from overseas.

Mr Neumann expects it to be running again early next year.

"Ms Harding should know that the Mt Stapylton radar covers Ipswich, all she needs to do is go to the bureau's website," he said.

Topics:  bureau of meteorology, national centre for atmospheric research, redbank plains weather station


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