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Deceptively dry start to the year in Perth

Ben Domensino, Monday April 16, 2018 - 17:47 EST

It may come as a surprise that Perth is having one of its wettest starts to a year in recent decades.

The last three months have been almost completely dry in Perth. The city only registered 3.4mm of rain between the beginning of February and 9am today, which is well below the long-term March-to-April average of 77mm.

However, January's 106mm brings the city's running annual total up to 110mm, which is its sixth highest up to this point in the year out of the last 25 years.

It's worth noting that while January's monthly total makes it look like a wet month on paper, almost all of its rainfall (96mm) was recorded during just 24 hours in the middle of the month.

So while the year has undoubtedly felt dry, the one-day deluge in the middle of January has pushed the start of 2018 up the ladder in the record books. Without that day, this would be the city's fourth driest start to a year in the last two and a half decades.

The southwest of Western Australia, including Perth, has experienced an overall downward trend in annual average rainfall in recent decades, a trend that research suggests is due to climate change.

- Weatherzone

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