Weather News

Fires and heatwaves across Australia

Ben Domensino, Monday January 9, 2017 - 12:44 AEDT

A severe heatwave will grip parts of eastern Australia this week as severe fire danger threatens the west. This isn't unusual for summer, but it is still dangerous.

An area of high pressure to the east of Australia will stubbornly hold a mass of hot air over parts of New South Wales and Queensland for the remainder of this week.

Temperatures are likely to reach the mid-forties from Tuesday to Friday in parts of northern New South Wales and southwest Queensland, where Bourke should have two 45 degrees days and Birdsville up to four.

The coast will have the hot weather interrupted on most days by a sea breeze, although some scorching days and uncomfortable nights are on the cards.

Sydney will be noticeably warm each day this week except for Thursday, while Tuesday and Friday nights could be hard to sleep through. Wednesday will be the standout as temperatures reach the low forties in the west and only a few degrees cooler in the city. Brief respite on Thursday will be followed by another hot day in the west on Friday, although sea breezes should keep the eastern suburbs cooler.

Further north, Brisbane will start to feel the heat towards the end of the week and could reach 33-35 degrees from Thursday to Saturday. Some inland location in southeast Queensland will near 40 on these days.

Despite the heat, relatively light winds and elevated humidity will help to keep fire danger ratings suppressed across eastern Australia this week. There is still a risk of dangerous bush and grass fires, so be sure to stay up to date with the latest warning information.

A cool change will flush the heat out of New South Wales and southwest Queensland on Saturday and southeast Queensland on Sunday. Unfortunately the respite will be short lived, with warm northerly winds redeveloping across eastern Australia from the beginning of next week.

The eastern states aren't alone with the hot weather this week. Beaches and pools are also busy in the west as a low spinning over the interior drives hot air towards the Indian Ocean.

Perth is expected to reach the mid-thirties from today until Wednesday, although daily visits from the Fremantle Doctor will bring afternoon relief. Hot and windy weather further north is causing severe fire danger ratings in the Gascoyne today.

A cool southwesterly change will reach Perth on Wednesday and sweep across the South West Land Division on Thursday.

Health advice relating to heatwaves can be found through your state's public health website and the latest fire weather warnings are available at:

- Weatherzone

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Some welcome rain on the way for central Queensland and New South Wales

12:58 AEST A somewhat unseasonal trough will form over Australia's eastern interior during the coming days, producing rain for some areas suffering from severe rainfall deficiencies.

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