Geelong’s rain averaged 28 mm over the urban area and was higher in the southern and western suburbs than elsewhere (Grovedale South 38 mm).
Both the Bellarine Peninsula and most of the Otways were below average for the month.
When comparing rainfalls it is important to compare intelligently. Geelong’s 143-year history of recorded rainfalls shows that the long-term average for March is 36.9 mm. But, over time, there has been a decrease.Geelong’s most recent 30-year average rainfall figure for March (1984-2013) is only 28.1 mm, making March our driest month of the year. So far this calendar year the Geelong urban area has totalled 73 mm of rain, compared to the 30-year average of 103.1 mm. This does not mean we are in drought, but after last year’s below average rain plus a possible El Nino arrival later, we may be facing another drier year. However none of this is certain because El Ninos do not always mean drought for Geelong either. The catchments are still at a healthy 75% of capacity.
A feature worth noting this month is that the automatic weather station at Breakwater broke down on the 21st and did not record the rain that all of Geelong had by 9am on the 22nd. This averaged out at about 4 mm but will not be included by the Bureau of Meteorology owing to the way in which that body decides to operate. However Geelong Weather Services has included the missing figures.
Compared to the 30-year average, Geelong has been 0.8 of a degree warmer than normal in March. The 30-year mean March temperature is 17.8 degrees and this month it was 18.6. The top temperature was 34.0 degrees on the 11th and there were 6 days over 30 degrees. The average is 4 days over 30.
There were two thunder/lightning days on the 15th and 27th and a maximum wind gust of 72 kph on 15th was also recorded in a thunderstorm. The rest of the month was generally unexciting, apart from the reported sighting of some unexplained lights over Corio Bay on a couple of occasions. These may have been caused by small fire balloons launched by pranksters.
|Forrest (West Barwon)||44.8||62.8|
|Bell Post Hill||28.3||37.4|
|Urban Area Average||28.0||32.0|