Mercury starts to soar

Holly ThompsonSound Telegraph
Freddie, 9, and Kallie Campbell, 5, cool off at the Rockingham foreshore.
Camera IconFreddie, 9, and Kallie Campbell, 5, cool off at the Rockingham foreshore. Credit: Sound Telegraph / Holly Thompson

Summer has well and truly hit Rockingham and the surrounding areas, with temperatures this week getting up towards 40C.

Many will be looking at finding ways to cool off, by sitting in front of an air-conditioner or heading down to Rockingham foreshore for a swim.

The Bureau of Meteorology released its 2019/20 summer outlook report last week, which showed a large portion of the country is likely to see a continuation of the warmer and drier than average conditions experienced throughout spring.

Bureau of Meteorology head of long-range forecasts Dr Andrew Watkins said the outlook was an important reminder for communities to be alert to the potential severe weather risks over the coming months.

“We have already seen significant bushfire activity during spring and the outlook for drier and warmer than average conditions will maintain that heightened risk over the coming months,” he said.

“This outlook also means the risk of heatwaves is increased, so it is important the community stays up to date with the latest information and advice.”

Dr Andrews said Australia's outlook was being influenced by a strong positive Indian Ocean Dipole.

“The key culprit for our current and expected conditions is one of the strongest positive Indian Ocean Dipole events on record,” he said.

“A positive IOD means we have cooler than average water pooling off Indonesia, and this means we see less rain-bearing weather systems and warmer than average temperatures for large parts of the country.”

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