The Bureau of Meteorology Climate Outlook for November 2017 to January 2018 shows eastern Victoria is likely to have a wetter than average three months. The rest of the country has around a 50% chance of above average rainfall.  November is likely to be drier for most of northern WA, with highest chances in the Pilbara and Gascoyne regions.

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Chance of Above Median

Hurricane Irma is moving north over Florida after making its landfall at the Florida Keys archipelago around 9am local time.  Irma weakened after landfall with maximum sustained winds estimated to be 65kt at 11/0000UTC.  It is expected to weaken further over land and should dissipate from 13th September.

Radar Imagery courtesy of the National Weather Service.

In a rare event in the western Atlantic, three hurricanes are in a row – Katia, Irma and Jose. The strongest among the three, Hurricane Irma has already crossed the Dominican Republic and left fatalities and massive damages in its wake. Irma remains a threat to Cuba, The Bahamas and southern Florida.

  • Hurricane Katia in the southwestern Gulf of Mexico has maximum sustained winds of 80kt near the centre and is moving slowly WSW towards southern Mexico.
  • Hurricane Irma now west of Inagua Islands has maximum sustained winds of 135kt and is moving WNW skirting the northern coast of Cuba towards southern Florida.
  • The last in line, Hurricane Jose with maximum sustained winds of 110kt is moving WNW towards the northern islands of the Lesser Antilles.

Photos courtesy of the National Hurricane Centre.

Typhoon Hato is one of the strongest tropical cyclones that hit Hong Kong and Macau in the past 20 years, triggering the highest Severe Typhoon Warning 10 from the Hong Kong Observatory.

The system started as a weak circulation over the NW Pacific well east of northern Philippines on 19th August 2017. It then intensified and moved WNW-NW crossing Luzon Strait on the 21st and the northern South China Sea on the 22nd. Typhoon Hato reached maximum wind speed of 80kt at 23/0300UTC before making its landfall at Macau at 0600UTC.

Typhoon Hato left casualties and massive destruction in its wake.

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Tropical Cyclone Forecast Track issued to OWS Client 23/00UTC

Himawari-8 Vis Satellite 0300UTC 23 August 2017

Damage of Typhoon Hato at Macau
Source: Hong Kong Free Press

The Bureau of Meteorology has downgraded the ENSO Outlook from El Niño WATCH to INACTIVE.  The tropical Pacific Ocean El Niño Southern Oscillation  is likely to remain neutral for the second half of 2017.

According to BoM, the trade winds and Southern Oscillation Index are well within the neutral range.  All eight international models surveyed by the Bureau now suggest tropical Pacific Ocean temperatures are likely to remain ENSO-neutral for the rest of 2017.

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Eni has started gas production from the Jangkrik Development Project in the deep water of Makassar Strait ahead of schedule. The project comprises the gas fields Jangkrik and Jangkrik North East.

Offshore Weather Services is proud to be the weather forecast service provider for Technip and Saipem during their operations in the Jangkrik Field.

Eric Chiong, Company Director and Senior Weather Forecaster came on board Posh Arcadia on July 4-13, 2017 for Saipem during the anchor cable replacement of the Floating Processing Unit (FPU) Jangkrik.

The cable replacement was challenged by recurring squalls over the Makassar Strait but the OWS in-house high resolution WRF models with spatial resolution of 1.1km and hourly temporal resolution greatly assisted Eric in determining the risk of squalls 36 hours ahead.

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As per latest Bureau of Meteorology update issued 6 June 2017, the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) remains neutral but there remains a 50% chance of El Niño developing in 2017.

The Bureau’s ENSO Outlook remains at El Niño WATCH.  However, El Niño development appears to have stalled as indicators have shown little or no increase for several weeks.

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According to the Bureau of Meteorology latest Drought Statement, serious to severe rainfall deficiencies are present near the west coast of Western Australia, the Eyre Peninsula and the western highlands of Tasmania.

May rainfall data indicate rainfall deficiencies persisting in Tasmania with below average rainfall for most of Western Australia, large parts of South Australia and Victoria, and northwestern New South Wales.

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131107142831-02-typhoon-1107-story-topOffshore Weather Services Pty Ltd forecasts that the expected number of tropical cyclones over the NW Pacific region in the 2017 season is 26, which is slightly above the long term (1970-2015) average. These are expected to be of above average intensity with Accumulated Cyclone Energy (ACE) 130% of normal.

In the South China Sea, about 8 tropical cyclones are expected to affect the region, which is close to average. These systems also expected to be close to average intensity when compared to the long term average.


For more details of the 2017 Northwest Pacific Tropical Cyclone Season Outlook, please click the link below:


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    Offshore Weather Services would like to congratulate the Shanghai Salvage Company on the successful lifting of the ferry Sewol from the seabed off southwestern South Korea on March 23, 2017. The ferry capsized on 16 April 2014 en route from Incheon to Jeju in South Korea while carrying 476 passengers.

    In a very complex and lengthy salvage operation made more difficult by the cold waters, strong ocean currents and adverse weather conditions the vessel was finally brought to the ocean’s surface suspended between two large barges supported by wires running through 66 hydraulic jacks. It was imperative that the Sewol be brought to the surface without further damage and this was successfully achieved.

    The stricken vessel will now be transported to Mokpo in South Korea where a search will be made for missing bodies and the cause of this tragic accident.

    Offshore Weather Services are proud to have provided the weather forecast service to Shanghai Salvage for the entire salvage operation.

    More links about raising of MV Sewol ferry:


    Herald Sun: