Australia is going to be rocked by a once in a lifetime heatwave this week that could even break a 125-year temperature record for November (40°C or 104°F) on Thursday in Melbourne.
At this time of the year, temperatures normally reach the mid 30°C, and it is unusual to see them into the high 30°C.
This sudden heatwave and the windy conditions prompted officials to declare total fire ban conditions for much of the country as dry weather and soaring heat spark fresh bushfire fears. The ban is forecast to be lifted by Thursday.
The sweltering temperatures in Queensland combined with the 70 fires already burning across the state are set to leave firefighters on edge. Currently there is no forecast of significant rain until January.
Elevated fire dangers & severe to extreme heatwave conditions are persisting over much of the #TopEnd & #WesternAustralia. There is also potential for the heat to extend into #SouthAustralia & parts of #Qld early next week ?️ ☀️ Heatwave forecasts at: https://t.co/LJSYI2OXpF pic.twitter.com/SCFXOTdwhn— Bureau of Meteorology, Australia (@BOM_au) November 14, 2019
South Australia is also facing catastrophic fire conditions, strong winds and dust haze, with more than 100 schools as well as national parks and reserves shut down for the day as temperatures rise to 45°C (113°F). Again heat records could fall in Adelaide. A total fire ban will be in place across the state.
Monthly temp average for #Melbourne in November is 22 celcius/71.5 Fahrenheit— ????????????????? (@Aurora_Starlit) November 19, 2019
This Wed = 32C/90F (down from predicted 39C) & Thurs = 39C/102F
Thankfully I'm working from home on Wed/Thurs & NOT LEAVING HOUSE! #Australia #Heatwave #ClimateChange #ClimateEmergency pic.twitter.com/8Nf9vXd7Ec
New South Wales
In NSW’s west, a ‘severe heatwave’ warning is in place, with a ‘low-intensity’ heatwave forecast further inland.
About 50 fires are still burning throughout the state, with the Gospers Mountain blaze still raging out of control, having razed nearly 150,000 hectares.
The interior parts of the state have been issued a ‘catastrophic’ fire warning though, with levels hitting severe and very high in many other areas.
Severe Weather Update: very dangerous fire conditions for southern Australia. Video current 12pm AEDT 20/11/19. Catastrophic Fire Danger current for parts of WA & SA today, with hot, dry & windy conditions shifting east tomorrow. Latest weather warnings at https://t.co/9BybMPk2Tp pic.twitter.com/iHUbFLddza— Bureau of Meteorology, Australia (@BOM_au) November 20, 2019
Catastrophic warnings are in place for parts of Western Australia (red) with severe (orange) and very high (yellow) warnings in place for parts of the coastline.
So make sure you are drinking plenty of water and keeping cool by avoiding going out in the heat of the day. [Daily Mail]