About the heatwave service

From October 2022, the Bureau commenced issuing a new Heatwave Warning for severe or extreme heatwave conditions.

The Heatwave Warning service will provide a public warning that a heat hazard is forecast within the next 4 days and help Australians to prepare for and lessen the impacts of a heatwave event.

The warnings will include 5 sets of action statements agreed with our partner health and emergency service agencies across Australia.

The action statements align to the severity of the heatwave to help the community understand and prepare for heatwave situations.

The heatwave warnings issued by the Bureau will be complemented with heat health messages provided by state and territory agencies.

How will I know if there is a heatwave warning?

The Bureau will issue a heatwave warning for your weather district if a severe or extreme heatwave is expected.

Warnings will be sent to Health and Emergency Management agencies and issued through the Bureau of Meteorology website and Bureau's Weather App (BoM Weather App) and telephone service.

What time will a heatwave warning be issued?

Heatwave warnings will be issued at 3 pm local time for all states/territories except Western Australia where it will be issued at 2 pm local time.

Heatwave Classifications

Heatwave warnings are issued for two types of heatwave:

Severe Heatwaves are likely to be more challenging for vulnerable people such as older people, particularly those with medical conditions.

Extreme Heatwaves are rare. They are a problem for people who don't take precautions to keep cool—even for people who are healthy. People who work or exercise outdoors are at greater risk.

Heatwave Warnings

The Heatwave Warning consists of 4 maps covering 4 three-day periods, extending out to 3 days in the future. The warning includes a description of the expected maximum and minimum temperatures, the timing of when the heatwave will peak and/or ease and affected towns and communities within the warning area.


Heatwave Warning For Queensland

Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology
Head Office (National Production)

Issued at 01:23pm EST on Thursday 1 September 2022

Valid for Tuesday 4 January 2022 to Friday 7 January 2022

Extreme Heatwave Warning for: Northern Goldfields and Upper Flinders, Herbert and Lower Burdekin, Central Coast and Whitsundays, Capricornia, Central Highlands and Coalfields and Central West Districts

Severe Heatwave Warning for: North Tropical Coast and Tablelands, North West, Channel Country and Maranoa and Warrego Districts

Cancelled Heatwave Warning for: Gulf Country District

Heatwave Situation for Sunday 2nd January 2022 to Tuesday 4th January 2022

Heatwave Situation for Monday 3rd January 2022 to Wednesday 5th January 2022

Heatwave Situation for Tuesday 4th January 2022 to Thursday 6th January 2022

Heatwave Situation for Wednesday 5th January 2022 to Friday 7th January 2022

Safety Advice

  • Extreme heatwaves can be dangerous for everyone.
  • Severe heatwaves can be dangerous for many people, especially older people, babies, children, pregnant and breastfeeding women, people with medical conditions and people who are unwell.
  • Seek a place to keep cool, such as your home, a library, community centre or shopping centre.
  • Close your windows and draw blinds, curtains or awnings early in the day to keep the heat out of your home.
  • If available, use fans or air-conditioners to keep cool.

Weather Situation

Maximum temperatures will reach the mid thirties to mid forties over the next few days with overnight minimum temperatures in the low to high twenties. Heatwave conditions are expected to ease from Friday.

Locations likely to be impacted include Bowen, Charters Towers, Clermont, Charleville, Emerald, Hughenden, Ingham, Longreach, Moranbah and Townsville.

For information on staying safe during a heatwave go to the QLD Department of Health web page.

The next heatwave warning will be issued by 3:00pm EST on Friday 2 September 2022

Sample heatwave warning for Queensland.

Heatwave maps

The heatwave service provides heatwave assessments, which identify heatwaves in the preceding days, and heatwave forecasts, which predict those about to occur.

The maps use colour coding to show the three different heatwave intensities, so you can see what conditions are heading your way.

The yellow colour indicates the lowest level of heatwave, while the warmer colours of orange (severe) and red (extreme) indicate rising severity.

Heatwave Assessment

The Heatwave Assessment consists of two maps for the previous two three-day periods. Each map shows the location of heatwave conditions, and the level of intensity. The map is accompanied by text describing the conditions.

Heatwave Forecast

The Heatwave Forecast consists of five maps for the next five three-day periods. Each map shows areas where heatwave conditions are forecast and the intensity they are expected to reach.

Sample heatwave warning for Queensland

Heatwave Situation for Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, 3 days starting Monday 22 November 2021

Significant heatwave conditions will persist, with extreme heatwave conditions forecast for the central Top End, inland of Broome and inland of Townsville. Low to severe heatwave conditions are forecast more broadly from Broome across the Top end and extending to inland of Bundaberg.

Example of a heatwave forecast map and text.

Calculating the heatwave forecast

Heatwaves are calculated using the forecast maximum and minimum temperatures over the next three days. This information is compared to what would be considered hot for that location, and also to the observed temperatures over the last 30 days.

This calculation considers people's ability to adapt to heat. For example, the same high temperature will be felt differently by residents in Perth compared to those in Hobart, who may not be used to the higher range of temperatures experienced in Perth.

Similarly, if there has been a period of relatively cool weather in your location, then a sharp and sustained increase in temperature, this will show up in the heatwave forecast.

This means that in any one location, temperatures that meet the criteria for a heatwave at the end of summer will generally be hotter than the temperatures that meet it at the beginning of summer.