WA radar improving
The Bureau of Meteorology is working to revolutionise weather forecasting in WA.
The bureau is rolling out eight new radars in the southern corner of the state.
The next-gen tools will form the most advanced weather forecasting network in Australia.
“When you look at the coverage of radars across the south-west of WA we will have more radars in the south-west than other state's have in totality,” the Bureau's WA spokesperson Neil Bennett said.
“We will have one of the most comprehensive networks of Doppler radar in the country.
“The Doppler [radar] takes us another step forward [in seeing] how the weather systems are behaving as they are moving into the area of the radar.
“Doppler measures the speed at which the raindrops are moving, either towards or away from the radar, and that gives us a very, very good amount of information as to the intensity of thunderstorms and also the location of the major wind shift associated with where the location of the frontal systems is.”
Australia now features 24 of the of new generation weather radars.
Western Australia has three Dopplers in its sheep and grain belt, and more in Perth and Kalgoorlie.
Albany's upgraded weather gear will come online in the next fortnight, with Geraldton and Esperance to be active in early 2020.
The WA State Government has committed $23 million to the upgrades, despite the BOM being a federal body.
“I guess there was a view in Western Australia that we weren't getting the sort of investment that was really needed for our farming community so the state has stepped up,” State Agricultural Minister Alannah MacTiernan said.
“We're very export focused so our farmers really do need to be able to be very cost effective and having access to Doppler radar really does rein-in costs.”