Sydney, Australia, Sep 18 (EFE).- Wild weather was expected in Australia this week with a heatwave alert in place on Monday due to an unusual rise in temperatures, coming ahead of a cold front expected to send thermometers plunging mid-week.
Within hours on Monday, the Bureau of Meteorology issued warnings for both hot and cold weather anomalies.
The agency said that temperatures were currently “significantly above average” for this time of year, with some places up to 15C higher than usual September figures, thought to be caused by a slow-moving high pressure system creating hot and dry conditions, especially across South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales.
“We are rapidly moving towards our first 40-degree temperature of the season,” said a spokesman in a video uploaded to the bureau’s Facebook page.
On Sunday, the agency had warned that “the prolonged, early-season nature of this heat is very uncommon for September, and a number of early season and September records are likely to be broken in coming days.”
However, the hot weather will move to the northwest by Wednesday when the heat in the southeast will be replaced by a cold front, “dropping temperatures 10-15C” across parts of South Australia, Tasmania (where a severe weather warning has been issued), Victoria and southern New South Wales, the agency warned.
“This front is also likely to bring damaging winds, as well as widespread showers, storms, small hail, and snow,” it said.
Three weeks ago, the meteorological agency indicated in a report that Australia this year experienced its warmest winter, from June to August, since it began measuring temperatures in 1910.
In the coming months, Australia faces rising temperatures and drier than usual weather due to El Niño, a natural weather phenomenon caused by currents in the Pacific Ocean.
Australia has suffered severe droughts, floods and bushfires in recent years due in part to global warming. EFE