After 30 good years, the weather radar in Mildura has finally been replaced with the new state-of-the-art technology set to deliver more accurate and timely weather information for people living in three states.
The $5 million radar for the Bureau of Meteorology has been installed 45 kilometres west at Cullulleraine and its coverage extends to the south and northern parts of the Murray and into SA’s Riverland—an area that has previously been off radar coverage.
The radar’s innovative technology guarantees a more improved service as compared to the old Mildura radar, situated near the airport.
Featuring improved measuring and tracking of particulars within the atmosphere, the new technology is capable of giving more timely and accurate forecasts for the agricultural industry.
According to the federal Environment Minister Sussan Ley, the radar would greatly assist in transforming the way residents and farmers of Murray, Mallee and Riverland interpret weather predictions.
“It’s now going to be far more accurate and give you real-time data, distinguishing between rain, hail, fire and wind,” she told Storm Assist.
Ms Ley noted that the latest radar will also play a great role during emergency services by providing accurate patterns for weather events such as storms and bushfires.
Jason Harmer, a farmer at Cullulleraine noted that the Adelaide radar was more reliable than the Mildura one which residents considered unreliable with blackspots.
“[The Adelaide radar] was always better radar and shows more distance,” he said.
“The location of the Cullulleraine is on top of the hill should have a good range with not too many obstacles in the road,” Mr Harmer noted.
“Especially when there is a rain event, I become a radar junkie like most wheat farmers. I look at it every 10 minutes.”
Clem Blake a member of the Mallee Weather Watch Facebook page said he had carefully observed the district’s weather patterns for years, and acknowledged that the new radar was certainly a game changer for Mallee.
“You’ll be able to see the true intensity of weather system and thunderstorm developments and there’s a rainfall component,” Mr Blake said.
The latest radar which was funded by the Australian federal government is one of the multi-year projects set to boost the weather bureau’s observation networks.
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