BARELY VISIBLE: Dust storm in Quilpie.
BARELY VISIBLE: Dust storm in Quilpie. Susan Turner

Quilpie coated in red dust

QUILPIE residents have been left with a mess to clean up after a large red front full of dust tore through the town at the weekend.

The storm approached the Charleville region on Saturday afternoon, causing significant dust in the region, with visibility down to 50m and eased off late evening around midnight.

BOM meteorologist Lauren Pattie said southwest Queensland experienced a trough and thunderstorms that were very high based, meaning they were high in the atmosphere, resulting in minimal rainfall.

"We did see was some gusty winds associated with the bottom of those storms and those gusty windy conditions led to some dust being kicked up around the Charleville region and further south into northern NSW,” she said.

"There is an inland trough currently sitting over the region with thunderstorms expected from Tuesday through till Thursday.

"However, the storms are quite isolated so they are more likely to affect areas closer to the NSW border.”

Mrs Pattie said the region is susceptible to dust storms due to two main factors.

"Firstly because it is a very dry place, which means there is dust on the ground and the other factor is often storms in the southwest develop very high up in the atmosphere so there is a big gap between the bottom of the storm and the ground,” she said.

"Because of the gap, there is not a lot of rain falling out so we call them dry thunderstorms and the main impact is the gusty winds.”


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