A lengthy spell of heat is engulfing Central Australia, potentially the longest run on record for this time of year.
Alice Springs is likely to reach at least 35 degrees for at least ten consecutive days. This would break the September/October record of eight days, set in 2005. Alice Springs' records go back more than 70 years.
Nearby, Yulara is also on target to break a September/October record, exceeding 35 degrees for more than a week.
The Central Australian towns will reach 37 or 38 degrees most days, about six degrees above the October average.
The heat started yesterday in Yulara and today in Alice Springs and is likely to last until at least Thursday next week.
The heat has been building over northwestern Australia for more than a week, thanks to lengthening sunny days. Fitzroy Crossing recently reached 42 degrees for five days running, the first time this has occurred in October in seven years.
Northwesterly winds are sending the heat over Central Australia and some of it is reaching the east coast. Parts of Sydney and Brisbane are expected to nudge the mid 30s this week.
© Weatherzone 2012
18:15 EDT An Australian Urban Search and Rescue taskforce has returned from Vanuatu after a 10-day operation to repair schools and hospitals in Port Vila after Cyclone Pam.