Canberra heading for hottest JanuaryWednesday January 23, 2013 - 11:07 EDT
Canberra is on track to record its hottest January on record.
The city has broken its 1947 record for the most number of days above 35 degrees - so far it has had 11.
The temperature hit a record January high of 42 degrees last week, which was also the second hottest day ever measured in the capital.
Sean Carson from the Bureau of Meteorology says that could help push this month's maximum temperature past the long-term average of 28.5 degrees.
"Currently in Canberra we're sitting on an average maximum for the first 21 days of the month at 33.3 degrees," he said.
"That's a whopping 1.5 degrees above the previous record which was set fairly recently in 2010, but it also sits about 5 degrees above the long-term average."
Despite the hot start to the year, the Bureau of Meteorology is predicting cooler than normal temperatures for south-east Australia over the coming months.
Its outlook for February to April says warmer than usual temperatures in the Indian and Pacific Oceans are expected to produce cooler days and nights than usual over a large region of south-east Australia.
The same ocean influences should produce a drier than normal season for the central agricultural regions of north-east New South Wales and South Australia.
There is only a 35 to 40 per cent chance of above average rainfall for the farming areas.
Normal rainfall patterns are expected across the remainder of south-east Australia.
© ABC 2013
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Hail storms, heavy rain and gusty winds have lashed Victoria and hundreds of people have called for help from emergency services as a cold front moved across the state.