Queensland breaks weather records during week-long heatwave

 brisbanetimes.com.au  2/15/2018 8:51:00 AM 

Heat records have been broken across Queensland as the state has sweltered through several days of average temperatures above 40 degrees.

A heat record dating back 49 years was broken in north-west Queensland when Hughenden hit 42.8 degrees on Wednesday, the hottest day on record since 1969.

Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Sean Fitzgerald said much of Queensland recorded temperatures above 35 degrees during the week.

Heat records have been broken across Queensland as the state has sweltered through consecutive days of average temperatures above 40 degrees.

Heat records have been broken across Queensland as the state has sweltered through consecutive days of average temperatures above 40 degrees.

“In particular, out west is where it is very very hot - temperatures out there are at or exceeding 40 in some places, so quite a bit above average,” Mr Fitzgerald said.

“Lots of places are five degrees above average and some places are even 10 degrees above average, so plenty of warm temperatures about the state.

“You’re talking about places like Charleville, Longreach, Roma even Toowoomba.”

Records were also broken in Winton in central-west Queensland which recorded 46.5 degrees on Wednesday, breaking a February 28, 2016, record of 45.5 degrees, while a couple of hundred kilometres south, in Richmond, a 1983 record of 44 degrees was broken when the town hit 44.5 degrees.

Mr Fitzgerald said even though some places did not break records, the consecutive hot days of above-average temperatures where noteworthy.

“I think it’s nearly coming up to a week and that’s a long time to have above-average temperatures,” he said.

“[Brisbane] is about three or so degrees above its normal February average.

“It’s a very humid atmosphere for people near the coast ... it becomes quite oppressive.”

On Thursday, Brisbane hit 36 degrees which was six degrees above average.

Friday will bring a slightly cooler change with a maximum of 34 degrees predicted for Brisbane, but Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Jonathan How predicted temperatures would remain above average throughout the weekend.

“By Tuesday we will see maximums drop back into the high 20s to low 30s across the south-east and Wednesday will be much more pleasant across central and eastern parts of the state, but still very hot inland,” he said.

On Thursday the bureau also released its climate outlook for March to May 2018.

Climatologist Dr Linden Ashcroft said south-east Queensland looked to be spared from the warmer than average day and night temperatures expected across most of the country.

It was also predicted large parts of central Australia would have a drier than average autumn, including western Queensland.

Brisbane is predicted to hit 31 degrees on Saturday, 32 degrees on Sunday and 32 degrees on Monday.

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