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Queensland heatwave sees temperatures nudge mid-40s as humidity intensifies smoke haze across Brisbane

By Emma Pollard, Monday November 16, 2020 - 18:29 EDT
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Sunrise at Longreach near the Qantas Founders Museum where the temperature had already reached 26.4C just before 6:00am. - ABC

The Spring heatwave has sent temperatures soaring across Queensland, nudging November records in some areas.

The outback town of Winton hit a scorching 44C this afternoon and Julia Creek reached 43.9C — coming within 1C or 2C of the record.

In the Maranoa and Warrego regions, St George recorded 43.2C at 2:00pm and Roma sweltered at 42.2C.

A fire weather warning is in place for that region due to the very hot conditions and strong, gusty winds.

Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) forecaster Pieter Claassen said temperatures were about 10C above average.

"The heat's most pronounced in southern parts of the state, so around the Maranoa and Warrego district, we're seeing temperatures reach the low to mid-40s," he said.

"It's about 10 degrees above November averages and approaching November records in some places too."

He said while the hot weather was not unprecedented, it had lasted longer than usual.

"One more day to go until we get through it," he said.

Cool change may bring inland storms

Mr Claassen said a cool change was expected tomorrow.

"We will see a south-easterly change push through and drop those temperatures back down to November averages," he said.

"We just haven't seen a south-easterly change push through, so it has taken a long time for this to come through."

The change will potentially bring dangerous thunderstorms to the inland of the state.

"With that trough moving through tomorrow, we will see some showers and thunderstorms about south-eastern parts tomorrow," Mr Claassen said.

He said it would be much cooler for Wednesday's State of Origin decider in Brisbane.

More humid than Darwin

Mr Claassen said the high humidity in coastal parts of the South East had made it feel oppressive.

"Yesterday's dew point was higher than in Darwin and it was certainly more humid around the coastal areas than the Northern Territory yesterday," he said.

"Even though the heatwave isn't as severe around the coastal regions, that increased humidity is making it feel much, much warmer than further inland parts."

The humid conditions intensified the smoke haze over Brisbane from a bushfire burning on Fraser Island.

"The smoke haze might thicken up tonight and into tomorrow morning as well before the change clears it away as well," he said.


© ABC 2020

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