Sydney swelters through hottest Australia Day in 60 years

Yahoo News Australia and agencies
·2-min read

Sydney has recorded its hottest Australia Day in 61 years, sending residents swarming to beaches as New South Wales swelters through a heatwave.

According to Weatherzone, Sydney reached 37.1 degrees at 12pm on Tuesday, the city’s hottest temperature recorded on January 26 since 1960.

“The only hotter years were 41.1°C in 1960 and 40.3°C in 1915,” Weatherzone meteorologist Ben Domensino said on Twitter.

“Sydney does have a history of seeing some pretty phenomenal temperatures,” a meteorologist from BoM told Yahoo News Australia.

Sydney recorded its hottest Australia Day since 1960. Source: AAP
Sydney recorded its hottest Australia Day since 1960. Source: AAP

“So, we have some relatively high records record temperatures up for grabs.”

Sydney’s highest recorded temperature on Australia Day was at the airport, which reached a top of 41.6 degrees at 1.58pm on Tuesday, the Bureau of Meteorology reported.

Badgerys Creek, Bankstown, Sydney Olympic Park, Holsworthy and Penrith all recorded temperatures over 40.

The average temperature in Sydney for January is usually 27 degrees, the meteorologist said.

With Observatory Hill in Sydney topping 35 degrees today, it marks five consecutive days of Sydney’s temperature surpassing 30 degrees.

“That is relatively rare historically, but it has occurred in the past two summers,” the meteorologist said.

“The last time we saw widespread temperatures in the high 30s to mid 40s across NSW with a heatwave was in late November 2020 and during the month of 2019 to 2020 in late January, early February.”

Heatwave conditions have been seen across most of Australia of late, with South Australia, Tasmania and Victoria having hot weather over the weekend and through to Monday.

However, on Monday night, a cool change set in for Victoria and NSW can expect some relief from the heat on Tuesday night.

With the soaring temperatures, big swells and the public holiday, Surf Life Saving NSW were anticipating one of the busiest days on record.

"This provides almost a perfect cocktail for dangerous conditions where drownings are likely to occur," Surf Life Saving NSW spokesman Matt Spooner told reporters on Tuesday.

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