Adelaide on Friday, November 10, recorded a maximum temperature of 40.3 degrees. This was equal hottest for the first half of November on record with a reading of 40.3 degrees also on November 10, 1897.
The summer of 1897-98 was the hottest on record in Melbourne and at many other towns in Victoria including Bendigo and Mildura. It was also a very hot summer in South Australia, NSW and also in Queensland.
Maximum temperatures in Victoria in December reached 46 degrees at Mildura and in the Riverina 45 degrees at Deniliquin and around 40 to 42 degrees further north to Moree, but not as high in outback Queensland due to above average rainfalls.
In January 1898 there were prolonged heat waves in Victoria and in the Riverina, particularly from about January 24 which continued right through to February 4, 1898, but further north the effect of heavy rainfalls from Dubbo all the way north to Roma kept the highest temperatures around 38 degrees during both January and February, but with night time minimums being well above normal.
On November 11 and 12, many places in our region had their highest temperature for the first half of November since 2009. Wilcannia recorded 43.8 degrees and Griffith 41.7 whilst further north Birdsville recorded 44 degrees.
The very hot conditions continued in our regions during December 2009 but widespread heavy rain and thunderstorms arrived just before Christmas and again at end of December 2009 and early January 2010 with floods along the Castlereagh River in Coonabarabran.
The summer of 2009-10 was certainly hotter than normal generally, particularly south of Dubbo where maximums were just over 40 degrees until the end of January 2010. Deniliquin recorded the highest temperature of 45 degrees in January. Widespread heavy rain arrived early February and another burst arrived in the first week of March 2010.
The year 2010 was a very wet one indeed but I think 2024 will more likely follow the 1898 rainfall pattern, which was drier and warmer than usual.
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Currently the synoptic weather charts is showing most of central Australia and Western Australia being covered by large low pressures whilst ocean waters south and south west of Western Australia are covered by a strong high pressure system. This set up is called a blocking situation and the current cooler than normal conditions with west/south west winds will persist for another week. Once this blocking situation breaks down when a new high pressure forms to the east of Tasmania, maximum temperatures will return to above normal in our regions by the middle of next week. The hottest days, up to near 40 degrees, are anticipated about the weekender of November 25-26.
Bush fires currently in eastern Tasmania and in some areas of northern Victoria are very bad news indeed.
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