SMOKE HAZE: A blanket of smoke as come across the Southern Downs again this morning.
SMOKE HAZE: A blanket of smoke as come across the Southern Downs again this morning.

Smoke blanket returns to Southern Downs

A THICK blanket of smoke has covered the region this morning, despite conditions easing across the Southern Downs.

Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Adam Blazak said the smoke in the area was a result of fires currently burning in northern New South Wales.

"We're hoping to see some showers and storm activity over northern New South Wales, and there is a chance that that rain will help the fire conditions," Mr Blazak said.

"There's also a good chance of seeing some shower and storm activity for parts of the Southern Downs today.

"Western parts of the Granite Belt, around Goondiwindi and Texas could see some shower activity, if you're lucky you could pick up anywhere between 5mm and 15mm in isolated regions."

The changing conditions have resulted in Queensland Fire and Emergency Services (QFES) removing the State of Emergency that had been in place since November 9.

Despite the State of Emergency being removed, total fire bans remain in place for the Southern Downs and many local governments across the state.

Mr Blazak said the Bureau worked closely with QFES to establish whether it was safe to remove the emergency declaration.

"There has been a lot more humidity come in from the coast over the last two days, that has allowed the fire danger to subside a little bit," he said.

"Due to the extra humidity, particularly overnight, there has been more moisture in the air."

While a dry summer is forecast, Mr Blazak said pockets of rain could fall across the region.

"There is a chance towards the end of the week, from Wednesday that Warwick might see a chance of rain," he said.

"Our modelling programs are showing that it is going to be a warmer summer than usual.

"These models don't take into consideration large one-off rain events, but there is always hope that these systems could move through."


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