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Heatwave hits the Northern Territory, beating temperature records across the Top End

By Kristy O'Brien and Bridget Judd, Thursday December 6, 2018 - 19:24 EDT

So the humidity is so thick you can almost see it and even the air conditioner is struggling to offer a reprieve? Welcome to the build-up.

It's a season Territorians know all too well, but this year has officially been a scorcher.

, the mercury is taking its toll across the coast — and that means a few restless nights.

"Darwin residents experienced a much warmer-than-average night last night, with temperatures sitting around 30 degrees for most of the evening before dropping to a minimum of 29.9 degrees," meteorologist Laura Boekel said.

"The warmest ever recorded in Darwin [was] 29.7 degrees. Unfortunately though, last night won't be going on the record as the warmest overnight temperature due to a technicality in how we record.

"Our observations are recorded over a 24-hour period, not just overnight."

Though Darwin may have been pipped at the post by a technicality, records for maximum temperatures were well and truly broken across the Top End.

In Nhulunbuy, a record high of 38.7 degrees was recorded — beating the previous record of 38 degrees, set in 1967 — while Groote Eylandt residents suffered through an oppressive 39.8 degrees.

Spare a thought for locals in Borroloola, however, who experienced a stifling top of 44.6 degrees.

How do you beat the heat?

For those on the ground, the message was simple — stay as cool as possible.

But even the water isn't immune from a heatwave.

"It's about 33 degrees in the water at the moment," lifesaver Kaitlyn Stephens said.

"Definitely not what you'd expect, you think you're going to cool off, but it's a lot hotter."

With a reprieve still somewhere on the horizon, workers are doing it tough.

According to local tradie Ed Hardy, "the boys are knocking off a little earlier" than usual.

"They'll be in the graves a bit sooner," he quipped.

"They've been working at five o'clock every day, it's just something else."

Get set to blast the fan again tonight, Darwinites — according to the Bureau or Meterology, there's a chance we'll break the record after all.


© ABC 2018

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