Melburnians have embraced a cool reprieve after scorching temperatures cut power from tens of thousands of homes during the city’s hottest day in 10 years.
A powerful southerly cool change surged through the city centre just after 2pm as the temperature plummeted 12 degrees down to 26.9 within the space of seven minutes.
Temperatures will continue to drop before an overnight low of 20 degrees.
These French tourists spent Melbourne’s hottest day in 10 years at the St Kilda foreshore
‘Thunderstorms are starting to develop in the spotty convective cloud near and east of the change,’ Bureau of Meteorology Victoria tweeted on Friday afternoon.
‘Relief for northern and eastern parts of Victoria tonight, but the far north-west unfortunately will have to wait until Saturday.’
Earlier in the afternoon 75 kilometres south-west of Melbourne, Geelong was among the first to feel the sudden cool change as the temperature dropped from 44 to 31.
More than 145,000 homes remain without power across Victoria after the heatwave sweeping across the country sparked rolling blackouts.
The doppler radar shows the cool change sweeping through Melbourne on Friday afternoon
These young tennis fans also felt the heat at the Australian Open in Melbourne
That figure includes 73,725 homes and businesses in Melbourne, CitiPower and Powercor said.
The heatwave also caused mayhem on the roads with 100 sets of traffic lights out of action across Melbourne and Geelong.
‘VicRoads would like to alert motorists to a wide spread power outage affecting some traffic lights, overhead signage and variable message signs,’ a statement from VicRoads statement read
Welcome VicCoolChange has moved through the CBD,’ the Bureau of Meteorology tweeted
The heatwave is set to make its way across Victoria and New South Wales during the Australia Day weekend
‘Motorists are advised to obey all signage and all road rules.’
Temperatures soared to 43 degrees in Melbourne on Friday, the hottest since the city reached 46.4 on Black Saturday in 2009.
Saturday will be much cooler in Melbourne with a top of 27.
Thousands of homes have also been left without power in Adelaide and across parts of South Australia.
More than hundreds of thousands of Australians are without power across Victoria after the heatwave sweeping across the country sparked rolling blackouts
Victorian opposition acting energy spokesman David Southwick said it was embarrassing that the state couldn’t keep the lights on while thousands were visiting Melbourne for the Australian Open tennis tournament.
‘Melbourne is currently hosting thousands of international tourists for the Australian Open who must be wondering why the state government is asking its citizens to refrain from using common household appliances to prevent large scale blackouts,’ Mr Southwick said.
‘Most Victorians agree that renewable energy is the future but we need to make it a sensible transition that doesn’t threaten power supplies and cost Victorians a fortune.
‘Daniel Andrews owes all Victorians an explanation as to why he can’t keep the lights on.’
Victorian opposition acting energy spokesman David Southwick said it was embarrassing that the state couldn’t keep the lights on while thousands were visiting Melbourne for the Australian Open tennis tournament
Victorian Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said people should monitor their non-essential use of electricity.
Dishwashers, kitchen appliances, washing machines and pool pumps should all be turned off, she said.
A state-wide fire ban remained in place for Victoria on Friday.
The blackouts came as doctors warned that the intense sun could cause heart attacks, which may be mistaken for heatstroke.
About 100 people were rushed to hospitals across Adelaide by Friday morning due to heat stress incidents after temperatures hit a recording-breaking 46.2C on Thursday.
A total of 73,725 homes and businesses were without electricity on Friday afternoon, CitiPower and Powercor said
Rachelle Foreman, Director of Support and Care Heart Foundation Australia, told 10Daily people are putting themselves at risk confusing a heart attack for heatstroke as the symptoms are similar.
Dehydration and dropping blood pressure place immense pressure on the heart, she said said.
‘My ambulance colleagues here in Queensland have told me this summer they have seen a lot of people who think they have heatstroke and it turns out they’ve had a heart attack,’ she said.
‘People often think that if they are clammy, sweaty and nauseous they are just hot and bothered and are reluctant to call an ambulance.’
As heatwaves claim more lives than any other natural disaster, experts have urged people to be vigilant if they feel unwell or have chest pain this summer.
About 100 people were rushed to hospitals across Adelaide by Friday morning due to heat stress incidents after hitting the recording breaking 46.2 degrees on Thursday
South Australia’s heatwave in 2009 saw the number of deaths dramatically increase
Heat-related deaths often refer to the exacerbation of pre-existing medical conditions such as heart disease or stroke, according to a 2014 report.
South Australia’s heatwave in 2009 saw the number of deaths dramatically increase.
Heart-attack symptoms similar to heatstroke
Pressure, tightness or pain in the chest and arms which may spread to the neck, jaw or back
Indigestion or heartburn
Light-headedness or sudden dizziness
Ambulance call outs for cardiac-related incidents increased by 10 per cent in 2008 and 12.7 per cent in 2009.
And while a much-needed cool change had swept through Adelaide, resulting in milder temperatures on Friday, the heatwave began making its way across Australia.
Victoria and New South Wales are now preparing to swelter.
Melbourne’s forecast high temperature for Friday was 44C; the hottest since the devastating Black Saturday bushfires of 2009.
Residents were already sweating by 6am with temperatures sitting at a scorching 33 degrees.
The heatwave will make its way to Sydney over the weekend, with temperatures of more than 40C forecast for Australia Day on Saturday.
Melbourne’s forecast high temperature for Friday was 44C; the hottest since the devastating Black Saturday bushfires of 2009
Adelaide’s record-breaking heatwave has left the city’s streets deserted, as South Australians stay away from the CBD in droves during the sweltering conditions
The heatwave will make its way to Sydney this weekend, with temperatures of more than 40C forecast for Australia Day on Saturday
In the city’s west, Penrith will have a high of 42C, while the NSW Riverina region will hit a scorching 48C on Friday.
The high temperatures will be caused by hot air making its way across Australia from the northern part of the country.
Meanwhile in Queensland, a tropical low over the state’s far north is expected to intensify into a cyclone and head south.
The strengthening weather system is sitting over Cape York Peninsula and is forecast develop throughout Friday, the Bureau of Meteorology says.
The system was about 125km west of Weipa in the Gulf of Carpentaria and extends north across the peninsula.
Weekend weather forecast
Friday: Min 21, Max 29, mostly sunny
Saturday: Min 23, Max 33, sunny
Sunday: Min 23, Max 32, partly cloudy
Friday: Min 29, Max 44, windy, afternoon cool change
Saturday: Min 19, Max 27, partly cloudy
Sunday: Min 18, Max 23, partly cloudy
Friday: Min 23, Max 32, partly cloudy
Saturday: Min 23, Max 32, partly cloudy
Sunday: Min 23, Max 32, mostly sunny
Friday: Min 16, Max 39, hot and sunny
Saturday: Min 22, Max 40, hot partly, cloudy
Sunday: Min 21, Max 35, shower or two
Friday: Min 12, Max 27, sunny
Saturday: Min 15, Max 31, sunny
Sunday: Min 16, Max 34, sunny
Friday: Min 25, Max 31, partly cloudy
Saturday: Min 18, Max 29, partly cloudy
Sunday: Min 16, Max 28, cloud clearing
Friday: Min 20, Max 37, hot, partly cloudy
Saturday: Min 17, Max 23, late shower or two
Sunday: Min 14, Max 24, partly cloudy
Friday: Min 25, Max 32, shower or two, storm likely
Saturday: Min 25, Max 32, shower or two, storm likely
Sunday: Min 25, Max 32, shower or two, storm likely
Source: Bureau of Meteorology