Stinker, but the worst has gone

IF you thought it was hot last month, there’s a good reason for that — it was.

As the Border enters another weekend of soaring temperatures, figures from the Bureau of Meterology show the mercury hit more than 40 degrees on the Border a total of seven times in January.

That includes the 40.8 degrees peak yesterday.

And while February is starting where January left off, with 41 degrees expected today, it looks like the worst of the heatwave is over.

“February normally has a lot less runs of days above 40, that’s more of a January issue,” a Bureau of Meteorology spokesman said.

“There could be some temperatures in the mid-30s again toward the end of this week but the run of days in the 40s is probably over.

“There’s still hot air in some of the inland areas though and it doesn’t take much to bring it back, but it might be more tropical conditions and hopefully bring some rain.”

The five-day heatwave from January 14-18 broke the record for the longest January heatwave.

But the Border couldn’t quite beat 1939 for the hottest January day on record, missing it by three degrees, with the 43.6 degrees recorded on January 16.

Residents also sweated through the hottest night of the month that same night, with the mercury dipping down only to 23 degrees.

The mean maximum temperature was 33.7 degrees while the mean minimum was 16.9 degrees.

As for rainfall, last week’s mega-dumping of 31 millilitres in one day saved the Border from being completely dry — before January 25, only 1.6 millilitres had fallen.

It was a similar story elsewhere in the North East: Yarrawonga sweltered through eight days of 40-plus temperatures and a mean maximum of 34. Rutherglen had seven 40-plus days and a mean of 33.4; while Wangaratta recorded four 40-plus days and a mean of 33.4.

The bureau is predicting tops of 41 and 42 degrees today and tomorrow, followed by 39 on Monday with the chance of some late thunderstorms.

By Tuesday it will drop to 32, and should stay around there for the rest of the week.