Prolonged heat wave in inland QLD and excessive rains in Central Northern Territory

By Peter Nelson on January 31, 2017
  • Prolonged heat wave in inland QLD and excessive rains in Central Northern Territory

    There has been a persistence of very hot conditions in Central Inland of QLD.

The main features of the weather profiles across the Nation has been the persistence of very hot conditions in Central Inland of QLD and excessive rainfalls just over the border into the Northern Territory which has persited for the last seven weeks. 

Inland parts of QLD particularly the Warrego and Maranoa district, maximum temperatures have been up to four degrees above normal whilst minimum temperatures four to five degrees above normal for both December and January. 

At Charleville, the mean maximum temperature was 3.5 degrees above normal and the mean minimum was 5 degrees above normal during January, the readings were 38.1 and 25.3 and on top of well above normal readings in December this has resulted in one of the hottest December to January periods in 126 years of records. 

The hotter December to January periods at Charleville were in 2006, 1947, 1942, 1940, 1939 and 1889. 

Roma had it's hottest December-January since 1958, Cunnamulla had it's hottest such period since 2006. 

In the Central NT, Tennant Creek had a total of 522 mms rain during December and January and this broke the previous record of 500 mms set during December 1888 and January 1889. 

Other very high rainfalls were in 1950-51, 1973-74, 2005-06 and three years ago. 

Daly Waters with 544 mms had it's 4th wettest December-January since 1873, the higher readings were in 1894-95, 2008-09 and last year. 

Brunette Downs with 508 mms had it's wettest such period since 1973-74. 

Maximum temperatures in our region for both December and January were one to two degrees above normal whilst mean minimum temperatures were about one degree above normal. 

Temperatures were closer to normal in Victoria. 

During December an unusual pattern occurred at Dubbo when the mean maximum temperature was well above normal at 33.8 and the rainfall at 138.6 mms was also well above average. 

The last time this same event happened was in December of 1889. 

During January Coonabarabran had also a similar pattern when the mean maximum temperature of 34.3, two above normal was associated with above average rainfall of 114 mms. 

The closest case was in January 1898 after which heavy rain fell in February and it was then very dry during autumn. 

The likely scenario from all these findings does suggest a very dry March, hotter than normal in our regions. 

Monthly temperatures to continue above normal right up to June. The most of the autumn season to be drier than average at this stage.

By Peter Nelson on January 31, 2017

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