Heat­wave melts records over Far North

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - Gizelle Ghidella

OPEN­ING a door to go out­side was like open­ing an oven this week.

It’s safe to say, sum­mer is well and truly here.

Record break­ing tem­per­a­tures were seen across the Far North with Low Isles reach­ing a high of 38.9° Cel­sius on Mon­day. It just pipped its previous max tem­per­a­ture of 38.8° set in 2016.

Harry Clark from the Bu­reau of Me­te­o­rol­ogy. said this week’s heat­wave is dif­fi­cult to relate to the sum­mer out­look.

“We will see the temp slowly ease but it will still be re­ally warm and these ex­treme heat­wave con­di­tions are likely to per­sist, es­pe­cially given the overnight tem­per­a­tures.

“There’s a 70 per cent chance of El Nino form­ing.”

The rest of the week is pre­dicted to sit in the mid-30s.

He said tem­per­a­tures var­ied across the re­gion due to the sea breeze but the en­tire north­ern re­gion was close to break­ing high tem­per­a­ture records.

The Cairns Air­port broke its max tem­per­a­ture of 40.5° (De­cem­ber 1995) with 42.6° on Mon­day.

Tem­per­a­tures re­mained (above aver­age) in the low-40s on Tues­day but eased as thun­der­storms rolled through.

BOM said the above aver­age weather will likely bring on thun­der­storms, as most of the re­gion found out on Tues­day.

Records were also bro­ken as Er­gon cus­tomers cranked up their air­con­di­tion­ers.

The Far North’s new record peak load of 384 megawatts was recorded at 7pm on Mon­day. The previous record was 371.9MW on Fe­bru­ary 17, 2016.

Trop­i­cal Pub­lic Health Ser­vice di­rec­tor Dr Richard Gair ex­plained the symp­tons of heat dis­tress.

“If you ex­pe­ri­ence symp­toms in­clud­ing an ex­tremely high body tem­per­a­ture, flushed dry skin, a rapid pulse, headache or disori­en­ta­tion, you may have heat stroke, which can be ex­tremely se­ri­ous,” Dr Gair said.

“Peo­ple should be alert to the symp­toms of heat-re­lated ill­nesses, in­clud­ing heat rash, mus­cle cramps, heavy sweat­ing, pale­ness, dizzi­ness, nau­sea, vom­it­ing and faint­ing.”

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