Updated: 12/28/2018 2:53:06 AM
Australia will experience a sweltering close to the year, with temperatures soaring above 40 C throughout the nation over the coming days. The post-Christmas heatwave shows no signs of easing, with warnings in place across parts of New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia. The relief could be more than a week away.
Published Monday, December 24, 2018
A heatwave will hit most of Australia this week that will push Christmas temperatures in some areas to as much as 12C above the December average before breaking monthly records later in the week.
Victorian authorities have issued health alerts for parts of the state and fire warnings are in place for several other states including Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania.
The Kimberley region of Western Australia is the one location that could break heat records on Christmas Day, with the town of Fitzroy Crossing expecting a maximum of 47 C, breaking the previous annual record of 46.5 C, which was set earlier this month.
Inland areas of South Australia will have temperatures in the low-to-mid 40 C and Adelaide is forecast to reach 41 C on Thursday. Parts of Victoria are forecast to reach temperatures above 40 C towards the end of the week, with Mildura in the state's north-west expecting a top of 46C on Sunday.
Other parts of the country could see record highs for December later this week. "Generally, for Christmas Day across southern Australia we're looking at temperatures 6 C to 12 C above average for the daily maximum," said Sarah Fitton, an extreme weather meteorologist at the Bureau of Meteorology. "It's a little bit cooler for Tasmania and southern Victoria for Christmas Day, but still above average for this time of year."
Coastal Queensland is the only region experiencing below-average temperatures for this time of year.
The Victorian health department has issued a health alert for the Mallee, north central, north-east and northern country (which takes in towns such as Bendigo and Shepparton) and Wimmera districts effective from Thursday.
"The forecast conditions may cause an increase in heat-related illnesses in the community," the department said and warned people older than 65, children and babies, pregnant women and people with medical conditions were most at risk.
On Monday afternoon the SA Ambulance Service issued a similar warning for the Christmas period and said they had extra doctors, paramedics, nurses and call centre staff working because of the forecast conditions.
In Sydney, temperatures are forecast to reach 34 C in city areas on Sunday, 38 C in Parramatta and 41 C in Penrith and Richmond.
Areas around Adelaide and Melbourne will have milder temperatures around Boxing Day before the heat kicks in again.
Australia Heatwave Facts
Affected Area: 2000 km.
Alert Level: Orange
- Cyclone Trevor
- Cyclone Veronica
- Queensland flooding
- Australia Heatwave
- Rosedale Wild Fire
- Tasmania Wild Fire
- Tropical Cyclone Penny
- Tropical Cyclone "Penny"
- Dengue Fever Epidemic
- Sydney tower Cracked
- Australia Heatwave
- Australia Hailstorm
- Storm Owen
- Australia Wildfire
- Australia heavy rain
- Australia fires
- Australia dust storm
- Maitland fire
- Shelly Beach Shark Attack
- Tropical Cyclone Joyce
- Tropical Cyclone Hilda
- Cyclone Dahlia