Thursday, July 10, 2008

Broome observed

In the clean out of the office, we have come across the daily weather obs for 1940-1996. Post 1996 this form was computerised (thank god!).

The A9 records all the 3 hour observations for temperature, wind, weather etc. The A8 also records these things (still hand written). The A9 has a large (A2 paper size perhaps) page for each month, while the A8 is confined to a booklet per month. The A9 is kept on station, and the A8 goes to head office.

The earliest A9 is from September 1940. If you can make out the numbers you will see that temperature is recorded in Fahrenheit. The neatness of the writing amazes me and has inspired me to be neater on my own forms in case someone in 30 years time is looking back on them going 'wow, handwriting. How unusual'.

Records are missing from February and March 1942. During this time Broome was evacuated. However, according to a document dated in March 1942, the observing office wasn't evacuated (along with as much equipment as practicable) until after the first bombing of Broome on 3rd March.

Online, in the climate database, there are no records for the period of about 1-7 March.

So I am wondering what has happened to the pages from Feb and March 1942. Perhaps the observers were busy with a crazy wet season and war and decided to not bother spending hours re-writing the observations on the A9. I don't blame them.