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Queenslanders brace for another scorcher day

By Kim Lyell, Friday January 4, 2013 - 09:37 EDT

Residents in Queensland's outback are getting ready for a second day of mid-40s temperatures, as heatwave conditions hit much of Australia.

On the edge of the Simpson Desert in the state's far south-west, Birdsville hit 45 degrees Celsius yesterday and the temperature is expected to reach 47 today.

Much of Queensland's west is in for a scorcher.

At Adavale, west of Charleville, police officer Chris Seng says cooling off under the cold tap will not be an option.

"The water here is artesian bore water - it comes up at 85 degrees as it is," he said.

Weather bureau spokesman Jonty Hall says Birdsville residents are no strangers to the heat.

He says the hottest day on record in the town 49.5 degrees Celsius, recorded back in 1972.

"Once you're getting up to within one or two degrees of those long-term records, it's quite a significant event," he said.

"It's probably not going to challenge that figure today."

South-east impact

Mr Hall says the impact on the south-east will be delayed until next week.

"But for us in the south-east it will be quite a brief event and we'll have a southerly change coming through to cool things off," he said.

A ridge over central Australia is expected to produce a heatwave of almost a week over much of the nation.

Winton is expected to get to 43 degrees today, and 41 degrees is forecast at both Longreach and Mount Isa.

Adelaide is expecting 44 degrees today, 41 in Melbourne and 39 in Hobart.

Preparations

The Federal Government is warning people to be prepared and alert.

Federal Emergency Management Minister Nicola Roxon says people should check fire bans and warnings in their area.

"Think about what you need in an emergency kit if you need to get away quickly," she said.

"Think about the contact numbers, make plans for what you'll do with your pets and don't take risks when those warnings have been issued.

"You can replace your belongings but you cannot replace your family, and that should be the top priority for everyone."


- ABC

© ABC 2013

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