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Ben Domensino, 28 Jan 2022, 1:39 AM UTC

More hot days ahead in Perth

More hot days ahead in Perth

Perth is about to add another few very hot days to its already record-breaking tally of 11 40ºC days so far this summer.

Two intense heatwaves in late-December and mid-January have seen Perth endure unprecedented heat this season.

At the start of this week, the city had already registered 11 days at or above 40ºC so far this season. This beat the previous record of seven days from the summer of 2015/16.

The most recent heatwave, which occurred between January 18 and January 23, also produced Perth’s first string of six consecutive 40ºC days on record. The previous record was four.

But while this has already been a record-breaking summer in Perth, it’s not over yet.

The city is forecast to get near 40ºC again this weekend. Maximum temperatures could reach about 39ºC on Saturday and 36 to 37ºC on Sunday and Monday.

Image: Forecast surface air temperature on Sunday, showing hot air hugging Australia west coast.

The impending heat has the potential to add another 40ºC day to the summer tally, on Saturday, which would extend this season’s record.

Slightly cooler southerly winds will bring some relief from the heat in Perth from Monday, although maximum temperatures should still reach the low-to-mid thirties every day next week.

Image: Perth's 7-day forecast showing a continuation of hot days over the coming week.

This month’s record-breaking heat in Perth has been caused by several factors:

  • A lack of monsoon cloud cover in Australia's western tropics has allowed extremely hot air to build up over the Pilbara and Kimberley regions of WA.
  • Regular bursts of offshore winds along the state’s west coast, facilitated by stubborn West Coast Troughs, have caused the mercury to soar in Perth in recent weeks.
  • Climate change has also made extreme heat more likely, with maximum temperatures in southwestern Australia increasing by 1.4ºC since 1910.
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