Adelaide has sweltered through its fourth hottest day on record, with even higher temperatures predicted for later in the week.
The mercury reached 45.1C in Adelaide just before 2pm today, well above the forecast maximum of 42C.
The Bureau of Meteorology is now forecasting a maximum temperature of 45C for Wednesday, ahead of a 46C forecast for Thursday.
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“It could be second of third as in the most intense heatwave we’ve seen,” John Nairn from the Bureau of Meteorology said.
“2009 was definitely the most intense heatwave we’ve seen.”
The hottest day recorded in Adelaide was 46.1C in 1939, which could be under threat in the coming days.
The conditions even prompted Premier Jay Weatherill to call a crisis emergency services meeting.
“I’m very concerned and there are extreme events which were already very difficult to manage,” he said.
Several suburbs in Adelaide’s north east and south had power outages today, while public transport commuters also suffered with delays on trains and trams.
The workload for paramedics is expected to spike tomorrow.
SA Ambulance Service said it is traditionally day three of a heatwave when crews feel the most pressure.
The State Emergency Service (SES) has urged all South Australians to keep a close eye on those people most at risk during the heatwave.
“It is important that people remain vigilant, cool and well hydrated and, if at all possible, avoid going outside into the heat,” SES chief officer Chris Beattie said.