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Reason for large Orana gas flare explained

Gerkies Stormchasing, consisting of father and son team Pete and Seth Gerke, snapped this brilliant shot of Monday night's storm south west of Chinchilla, the clouds illuminated by flaring from Origin's Orana Gas Processing Facility.
Gerkies Stormchasing, consisting of father and son team Pete and Seth Gerke, snapped this brilliant shot of Monday night's storm south west of Chinchilla, the clouds illuminated by flaring from Origin's Orana Gas Processing Facility. Gerkies Stormchasing

THE heavens opened over the Western Downs this week, bringing wide-spread rain, some hail, and even flash flooding to towns around the region.

Maree Young sent in this picture (below) of some decent-sized hail that fell around Burncluith, around 20km from Chinchilla.

Burncluith copped some decent sized hail on Tuesday afternoon, as well as some good rainfall.
Burncluith copped some decent sized hail on Tuesday afternoon, as well as some good rainfall. Maree Young

There have also been reports of hail around Tara.

Meanwhile, Acting Local Controller for Western Downs SES Sharn Pogan said local crews had to attend to one poor resident in Tara on Tuesday morning after the windows and roof of their house was damaged by a severe storm around 3.30am.

"There's been gale force winds, an awful lot of rain, flash flooding and branches and that sort of stuff down all around the place,” Mrs Pogan said.

Reports have come in of Burncluith receiving between 33-55mm, around 35mm at the Chinchilla Showgrounds, more than 70mm near Tara, and 28mm at Cameby.

Meanwhile on Monday evening, Gerkies Stormchasing - consisting of father and son duo Peter and Seth Gerke - took some incredible photos of storm clouds illuminated by flaring at Origin's Orana Gas Processing Facility, some 20km south of Chinchilla.

Origin Regional Manager Tim Ogilvie said the flaring was the result of a lightning strike on the Queensland / NSW border, which interrupted the Powerlink transmission network that supplies Origin's plants.

"Gas plants are designed to safely flare gas in this situation - and the system worked as intended. Orana flared gas for between two to three hours while it was being brought back on-line,” Mr Ogilvie said.

"We always try to minimise the occurrence and duration of any flaring activity by turning down production and diverting gas to other plants where possible.”

Topics:  chinchilla flare stormchasers weather western downs


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