SUNSHINE Coast, be prepared for a sweaty summer.
The Bureau of Meteorology has predicted a dry summer, with above average temperatures and at least 15 days of heat waves expected during the next few months on the Sunshine Coast.
Emergency services, BOM and Council representatives met at The J in Noosa Heads yesterday to discuss the storm season ahead for the region, with potential for flash flooding, bush fires and intense cyclones all on the cards.
Queensland Bureau of Meteorology weather services manager Richard Wardle said summer would be dry and hotter than usual.
"The outlook for the next three months, (is) dryer conditions for the Sunshine Coast, and warmer than average conditions,” Mr Wardle said.
"We've had a very wet winter and spring period, which means the soils are wet for this time of year.”
Mr Wardle said soaked ground from winter rain set conditions for flash flooding.
"Any rain we do get can cause potentially riverine flooding, because there's nowhere for the run off to go,” he said.
"With severe thunderstorms, if we have those intense rains in short periods of time, that can lead to flash flooding.”
BOM stated there was a 58% chance of more than the average number of cyclones this season, with up to six or more cyclones expected for Queensland.
The main concern for emergency services is the number of heat waves expected as the risk of fire danger increases, and the effect hot temperatures can have on unacclimatised visitors.
"In terms of bushfire potential, there's an increased bush fire risk, and bushfire season could potentially run a bit longer than usual,” he said.
"Heatwaves are becoming more common now for Queensland.
"Somewhere like the Sunshine Coast where you've got a transient population coming in, if they're not used to the heat, it can cause quite a bit of heat stress. That's a risk.”
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Sunshine Coast zone commander Mark Stuart said heat waves could affect the public in more ways than one.
"Members of the community need to be extra vigilant, but the heat waves can affect members of the community in other ways apart from fire,” Mr Stuart said.
"So that's checking on elderly neighbours and keeping pets cool.
"Once a bush fire does start, it's a lot harder for us to bring under control.”
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