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Australia’s blistering heatwave begins to bite as one town hits 49C

Australia’s hottest town recorded a whopping 49C as the nation battles a blistering heatwave. 

Marble Bar, north-western Western Australia, has built its reputation as one of Australia’s hottest towns – which was literally the case on Thursday.  

The minuscule town with the population of 174 residents recorded 48.4C at just 11am.

The Bureau of Meteorology said temperatures peaked at 49.1C in Marble Bar, while large parts of the country continue to swelter through heatwaves.   

Australia’s hottest town recorded a whopping 49C as the nation battles a blistering heatwave

Marble Bar, north-western Western Australia, has built its reputation as one of Australia's hottest towns - which proved to be correct on Thursday

Marble Bar, north-western Western Australia, has built its reputation as one of Australia’s hottest towns – which proved to be correct on Thursday

‘Heatwave conditions occur when both maximum and minimum temperatures remain well above average for the time of year,’ the Bureau said. 

Western Australia was not the only state to stretch over the 40C mark, with a number of other locations bracing the unrelenting temperatures.

The mercury hit 46.8C in Port Augusta and Whyalla, South Australia’s mid north region.

Alice Springs rose to 44C and Adelaide recorded 43.7C. 

Tennant Creek, in the Northern Territory, is about to head into the 28th day where temperatures have risen above 40C.

Forecaster Bradley Wood from the Bureau said the town ‘completely smashes their previous record’.

The Bureau of Meteorology said temperatures peaked at 49.1C in Marble Bar

The Bureau of Meteorology said temperatures peaked at 49.1C in Marble Bar

'Heatwave conditions occur when both maximum and minimum temperatures remain well above average for the time of year,' the Bureau said (pictured: man swims with dogs at St Kilda Beach, Melbourne, on Thursday)

‘Heatwave conditions occur when both maximum and minimum temperatures remain well above average for the time of year,’ the Bureau said (pictured: man swims with dogs at St Kilda Beach, Melbourne, on Thursday)

‘Previously the most they’d had in a month was 20 (days) in January 2008,’ Mr Wood told the ABC. 

In 1972, Tennant Creek recorded 16 days of heat over 40C.  

Mayor Steve Edgington said residents were avoiding stepping outside and their was a strain on air conditioners.

‘A lot of people are staying indoors, and it’s certainly had an impact on Christmas Day,’ Mr Edgington said.  

Temperatures in Victoria also soared above 40C with the Bureau recording 40.3C at Essendon Airport and 39.8C at Tullamarine Airport on Thursday afternoon.

In northwest Victoria, Mildura hit 43.8C and Swan Hill reached 43.6C at 3pm.

Temperatures in Victoria also soared above 40C with the Bureau recording 40.3C at Essendon Airport and 39.8C at Tullamarine Airport on Thursday afternoon (pictured: woman skateboards at St Kilda on Thursday)

Temperatures in Victoria also soared above 40C with the Bureau recording 40.3C at Essendon Airport and 39.8C at Tullamarine Airport on Thursday afternoon (pictured: woman skateboards at St Kilda on Thursday)

There was a total fire ban for Mallee and Wimmera, Victoria, on Thursday and warning for Mallee has been issued for Friday

There was a total fire ban for Mallee and Wimmera, Victoria, on Thursday and warning for Mallee has been issued for Friday

'A hot day in Melbourne today but the weak seabreeze is keeping things a little milder around the Bay,' the Bureau said (pictured: St Kilda Beach)

‘A hot day in Melbourne today but the weak seabreeze is keeping things a little milder around the Bay,’ the Bureau said (pictured: St Kilda Beach)

The Bureau shared a map of the Melbourne area which showed the intense temperatures surrounding the city

The Bureau shared a map of the Melbourne area which showed the intense temperatures surrounding the city

The CBD lingered near the 40C mark, recording  a sizzling 39C.

The Bureau shared a map of the Melbourne area which showed the intense temperatures surrounding the city.  

‘A hot day in Melbourne today but the weak seabreeze is keeping things a little milder around the Bay,’ the Bureau said.

There was a total fire ban for Mallee and Wimmera, Victoria, on Thursday and warning for Mallee has been issued for Friday. 

Amid the intense conditions, Melbourne residents were greeted by a stunning sunrise on Thursday morning.

The high temperatures across the country are anticipated to continue through to Sunday, with temperatures expected to be 10C to 14C higher than usual for late December.

An apocalyptic sunrise greeted Melbourne residents on Thursday morning, with fishers at Altona Pier vying for an early morning catch before the extreme heat sets in  

An apocalyptic sunrise greeted Melbourne residents on Thursday morning, with fishers at Altona Pier vying for an early morning catch before the extreme heat sets in  

Melbourne is heading for a top of 36C on Thursday but temperatures will exceed 40C in other parts of Victoria

Melbourne is heading for a top of 36C on Thursday but temperatures will exceed 40C in other parts of Victoria

Weatherzone meteorologist Jacob Cronje said a high-pressure system was trapping the heat.  

‘This heat has started to build-up over the north-western parts of the country and that’s extended all the way down to the south-east,’ he told the Today Show

‘That’s all been kept in place by a high-pressure system to the east of the country, effectively blocking and trapping this heat over all of us.’

While there is some relief in sight for parts of Australia from early next week, other areas will not be spared from the stifling heat until mid-January. 

‘Over South Australia, a cool change is set to come through that really will translate mainly to cooling South Australia and Victoria,’ Mr Cronje said.

‘We really won’t see significant cooling over New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory for the foreseeable future and the heat could even extend, although to a lesser degree, well into the New Year and even into the second week of January.’

Parts of Victoria are set to experience a heatwave not seen since 1920. Pictured, sunrise in Melbourne's Altona on Thursday

Parts of Victoria are set to experience a heatwave not seen since 1920. Pictured, sunrise in Melbourne’s Altona on Thursday

A cool change is expected to bring temperatures down in South Australia and Victoria after the New Year. Pictured, sunrise in Melbourne's Altona on Thursday 

A cool change is expected to bring temperatures down in South Australia and Victoria after the New Year. Pictured, sunrise in Melbourne’s Altona on Thursday 

The top of the Northern Territory, meanwhile, is in the midst of the monsoon season, with showers expected through to the New Year. 

‘It reminds us all that Australia is a continent with very significant varying atmospheric conditions,’ Mr Cronje said.    

In Altona, west of Melbourne, fisherman and joggers hit the pier for an early morning cast on Thursday before the inevitable crowd surge.

They were welcomed by a magnificent sunrise that looked like it was straight from a Star Wars movie.

Bureau of Meterology Forecaster Kevin Parkyn said Victoria’s Mallee region was expecting a heatwave not seen since 1920. 

The pink shading shows where surface temperatures are expected to exceed 40C between Thursday and Sunday

The pink shading shows where surface temperatures are expected to exceed 40C between Thursday and Sunday

'This heat has started to build-up over the north-western parts of the country and that's extended all the way down to the south-east,' Weatherzone meteorologist Jacob Cronje 

‘This heat has started to build-up over the north-western parts of the country and that’s extended all the way down to the south-east,’ Weatherzone meteorologist Jacob Cronje 

‘We’re looking at five consecutive days above 40 degrees in [Kerang] and we have to go back to about 1920 in the record books when we saw four consecutive days in December,’ Mr Parkyn said. 

Sky News senior meteorologist Tristan Meyers said the national heatwave would challenge the record books.  

‘This is not only due to how hot individual days are going to be – for example 45C, 46C, and potentially 47C in parts of western, southern New South Wales, northern Victoria and South Australia – but also how prolonged it’s going to be,’ he said. 

‘For some areas we’re going to see a week or more of 45C-plus temperatures and that hasn’t ever happened before -particularly in December, but potentially all time.’

Central Victoria is forecast to reach blistering temperatures above 40C by the end of the week, with Mildura – in the state’s north-west – expecting a top of 46C on Sunday. 

Australians are set to swelter through a record breaking heatwave into the New Year with temperatures in some towns expected to soar above 45C

Australians are set to swelter through a record breaking heatwave into the New Year with temperatures in some towns expected to soar above 45C

Temperatures in Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and New South Wales are set to skyrocket over the coming days

Temperatures in Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and New South Wales are set to skyrocket over the coming days

Blistering temperatures have already seen beaches fill to the brim across the country. Pictured, Bondi Beach, in Sydney's eastern suburbs 

Blistering temperatures have already seen beaches fill to the brim across the country. Pictured, Bondi Beach, in Sydney’s eastern suburbs 

The only part of the country not closing in on record-setting temperatures is coastal Queensland, parts of which are still recovering from ex-Tropical Cyclone Owen.

New South Wales will experience stifling heat only a week after two supercell storms battered Sydney. 

Western Sydney could even see four consecutive days of 40-plus degrees, starting from Friday, when temperatures in Penrith are forecast to hit 41C. 

The sweltering weather has led to warnings from health authorities to limit sun exposure.

New South Wales Health said in a statement residents should expect ‘high heat and ozone pollution’ over the coming days.

Beachgoers are seen at Henley Beach in Adelaide on Thursday. The temperature is expected to reach 41C in the city

Beachgoers are seen at Henley Beach in Adelaide on Thursday. The temperature is expected to reach 41C in the city

Henley Beach proved a popular place to be for Adelaide residents looking to cool off from the extreme heat 

Henley Beach proved a popular place to be for Adelaide residents looking to cool off from the extreme heat 

Adelaide is expected to reach a high of 39C on Friday before a cool change which will bring the temperature down to a maximum of 30C on Saturday

Adelaide is expected to reach a high of 39C on Friday before a cool change which will bring the temperature down to a maximum of 30C on Saturday

New South Wales Health said in a statement residents should expect 'high heat and ozone pollution' over the coming days (pictured: Bureau warns air quality in Sydney is poor)

New South Wales Health said in a statement residents should expect ‘high heat and ozone pollution’ over the coming days (pictured: Bureau warns air quality in Sydney is poor)

‘People can be unprepared for the first real heat of summer, so this is a reminder of the safety measures we can all take to limit overheating and sun exposure,’ New South Wales Health Executive Director Dr Jeremy McAnulty said.

‘It’s important to keep up water intake, stay cool and avoid strenuous physical activity in the heat of the day because heat places a lot of strain on the body and cause dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.’

Dr McAnulty said the ozone pollution was of particular concern for asthma sufferers.  

‘As ozone can irritate the lungs, people with asthma need to follow their Asthma Action Plan and take their relieving medication where necessary. If symptoms get worse, they need to seek medical advice,’ he said.  

FOUR-DAY WEATHER FORECAST

 SYDNEY  

Friday: Min 21, Max 31, Mostly sunny

Saturday: Min 21, Max 31, Sunny

Sunday: Min 21, Max 31, Sunny

Monday: Min 22, Max 31, Partly cloudy

ADELAIDE     

 Friday: Min 24, Max 39, Very hot. Partly cloudy

Saturday: Min 19, Max 30, Partly cloudy

Sunday: Min 16, Max 29, Possible shower

Monday: Min 15, Max 29, Sunny

BRISBANE   

Friday: Min 20, Max 30,v Partly cloudy

Saturday: Min 21, Max 30, Partly cloudy

Sunday: Min 22, Max 31, Partly cloudy

Monday: Min 21, Max 31, Partly cloudy

CANBERRA  

Friday: Min 21, Max 39, Hot and mostly sunny

Saturday: Min 22, Max 38, Hot and mostly sunny

Sunday: Min 22, Max 35, Partly cloudy

Monday: Min 19, Max 31, Shower or two

 MELBOURNE  

Friday: Min 22, Max 34, Partly cloudy

Saturday: Min 21, Max 25, Shower or two

Sunday: Min 18, Max 23, Shower or two

Monday: Min 16, Max 24, Partly cloudy

PERTH  

Friday: Min 16, Max 26, Partly cloudy

Saturday: Min 14, Max 28, Sunny

Sunday: Min 16, Max 30, Sunny

Monday: Min 17, Max 32, Sunny 

 HOBART  

Friday: Min 16, Max 25, Mostly sunny

Saturday: Min 16, Max 24, Morning rain at times

Sunday: Min 13, Max 23, Possible light morning shower

Monday: Min 13, Max 25, Partly cloudy

DARWIN    

 Friday: Min 25, Max 32, Shower or two. Possible storm

Saturday: Min 26, Max 33, Shower or two. Possible storm

Sunday: Min 25, Max 33, Shower or two. Storm likely

Monday: Min 25, Max 33, Shower or two. Possible storm

 Source: Bureau of Meteorology  

 



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