The days have been hot and dry lately. The night before last it was still 32 degrees celsius at 11pm when I went to bed. Last night was a much more pleasant and cool at a mere 24 degrees at ten thirty. The cool southerly breeze they call the Albany Doctor blew most of the evening, straight into my bedroom window through the fly and security screen. I have been exhausted each evening on my return home and usually get straight under the cold shower, which unfortunately is not all that cold due to the water having travelled a hundred kilometres down a huge pipe that for most of the distance is above ground, baking in the sun.
Just now I received the latest news from the emergency Services and Bureau of meteorology: Use of the term catastrophic in referring to the potential risk gets one’s attention. It is still fairly unusual to hear the word, mostly we get “serious” but it’s likely to be less rare in future as Climate Change continues to raise the weather bar here in Australia. This is the only place I have ever seen dry thunderstorms, where lightning can ignite the tinder dry bush and grasses, with not even a chance of rain to dowse the fire.
This is why we require all properties to keep their grass mown to less that 75mm height over summer. There is a $250 fine for those who do not.
Severe to catastrophic fire dangers over southern parts on Saturday and Sunday with potential for dry and gusty thunderstorms. Significant wind change during Sunday.
Gusty easterly winds (peak gusts 60-75 km/h) developing about the Perth hills Friday evening before easing during Saturday morning. On Saturday, the surface trough will deepen near the west coast. Very hot, dry and very windy conditions are expected over most southern parts. Isolated dry and gusty thunderstorms are forecast over the western half of the ascoyne and northern half of the Central West district near the trough. Catastrophic fire dangers are forecast over the Gascoyne Inland, Inland Central West and may extend into the northern Central Wheat Belt and remaining Central West fire districts. Severe to extreme fire dangers are forecast over the South Interior, Goldfields and over the remaining Central West, Central Wheat Belt and Gascoyne Coast fire districts. Severe fire dangers are forecast in the Lower West fire districts, which include Perth and the Perth hills. The time of maximum fire danger is generally late morning around 11am but please refer to the latest detailed district forecast for times above GFDI thresholds. Gusty east to northeast winds (peak gusts 70-80 km/h) about the Perth hills developing late evening then easing during Sunday morning.
On Sunday, the surface trough will deepen near the west coast and move eastwards during the day with an associated wind change. Isolated mainly dry and gusty thunderstorms are forecast near the trough, near a broad line from Gascoyne Junction to Morawa to Northam to Albany and extending east to Southern Cross and Ravensthorpe and including the Perth hills. Extreme to catastrophic fire dangers are forecast over the Gascoyne Inland, Inland Central West, Central Wheat Belt and northern Great Southern fire districts. Severe to extreme fire dangers are expected over the remaining Great Southern fire districts. Severe to extreme fire dangers are forecast over the Lower West (including Perth and the Perth hills) and severe over the Stirling Inland fire district, possibly extending to the Stirling Coast. The maximum temperature in Perth, fire danger and thunderstorm potential is heavily dependent on the movement of the surface trough.
On Monday, the surface trough will move through the Esperance Shire during the morning. Severe fire dangers may occur in the Esperance Shire and also over the Gascoyne, Goldfields and northeast fire districts of the Southwest Land Division. Isolated mainly dry and gusty thunderstorms are also expected over these areas.
Lower West Fire Districts.
Gusty easterly winds (peak gusts 60-75 km/h) developing about the Perth hills Friday evening (~10/11pm) before easing during Saturday morning (~9/10am).
Saturday Very hot, dry and windy on Saturday with a severe fire danger forecast for the coastal and inland subdistricts. Peak fire dangers will occur generally around 10 and 11am. Winds during the morning will east to northeast 30/40 km/h with gusts to 50/60 km/h. S/SW sea breeze is forecast to develop about midday along the coast and a light sea breeze may reach the foot hills late afternoon or early evening. 3 pm relative humidity will be around 10% away from coastal parts.
Forecast maximum temperatures:
Gusty east to northeast winds (peak gusts 70-80 km/h) about the Perth hills developing late Saturday evening before easing during Sunday morning.
A severe fire danger is forecast for the Lower West Coastal fire district and
an extreme fire danger for the Lower West Inland fire district. Peak fire dangers will occur just before the passage of the surface trough, between 9 and 11am. Winds during the morning will be northeast to northerly 30/40 km/h with gusts to 60 km/h. A NW/W’ly wind change is expected to extend from the west mid to late morning. SW’ly winds are expected late afternoon and evening. Isolated mainly dry and gusty thunderstorms may occur over the Perth hills from late morning through to early evening. Minimum relative humidity will be about 10% prior to the wind change late morning.
The maximum temperature in Perth, fire danger and thunderstorm potential is heavily dependent on the movement of the surface trough.
Forecast maximum temperatures:
Just lately the temperatures here have been a degree or two higher than in Perth, so there may be a hot time in the old town this weekend.