Severe thunderstorms have caused flooding across some areas of Western Australia as record December rainfall fell across much of the state. Meanwhile, parts of South Australia have found themselves in the grips of a heatwave.
Heavy rain is very unusual in Western Australia at this time of year, with some locations receiving record daily rainfall for December. In some cases the rainfall totals amounted to four times the December average.
The heaviest falls were in and around Perth where totals were around 30-40mm. Mandurah to the south of Perth recorded 74mm of rain in 24 hours. This made it the town’s wettest December day in over 100 years. Nearly 5,000 people lost power during the stormy weather.
The Department of Agriculture in Harvey, recorded the state’s highest total with 109mm of rain. Perth itself escaped the worst of the heavy rain with only 9mm recorded in the city. However this is only just short of the December average of 10mm.
The unseasonal downpours look set to continue for the rest of the week and flash flooding and damaging winds remain a threat until Friday. There is also a risk of large hail.
By the end of the week we expect the severe weather to be into southeastern parts of Australia as an area of low pressure runs into some very warm air currently sat over South Australia and Victoria. Some parts had their hottest December night in three years.
For Lameroo, Clara and Port Augusta in South Australia it was the hottest night since last summer with an overnight low of 25 Celsius. Adelaide recorded the same value which is 10 degrees above the seasonal norm.
Daytime temperatures have been up around the mid to high thirties with hot northerly winds blowing in from the interior. The disturbed weather to the west will provide a thundery breakdown to the heat by the weekend by which time temperatures will fall close to the December average.