Greater Adelaide in 2018: drier and warmer than average

Rainfall in 2018 was below average throughout Adelaide and the Hills, despite a wetter than average November and heavy rain at times. Both daytime and night time temperatures for the year were warmer than average across Greater Adelaide.

The Australian annual climate statement provides a comprehensive summary of Australia's climate during 2018. Information about changes and long-term trends in Australia's climate can be found in State of the Climate 2018.

Drier than average

  • Rainfall in 2018 was below average throughout Adelaide and the Hills
  • Rainfall was very much below average for the first four months of the year, with wetter than average conditions in May, August, and November
  • The Greater Adelaide region as a whole had its sixth-driest September on record and driest since 1951
  • Annual rainfall totals ranged from 66% of average at Edinburgh RAAF to 82% of average at Mount Barker
  • Rosedale had its driest year since 1994

Very warm days

  • Mean maximum temperatures for 2018 were above average throughout Adelaide and the Hills
  • For maximum temperatures at the combined Adelaide city sites, 2018 was the eighth-warmest year on record
  • The hottest day of the year at many places was on 28 January, when Mount Lofty had its highest temperature on record
  • Adelaide city had its hottest April day on record when it reached 36.3 °C at Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) on 11 April at the end of a week of summer-like warmth
  • Monthly mean maximum temperatures for the Greater Adelaide region as a whole were in the ten warmest on record for January, April, July, and October
  • Annual mean maximum temperatures for 2018 ranged from 0.5 °C above average at Noarlunga to 2.4 °C above average at Mount Lofty
  • Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) equalled its highest mean daily maximum temperature on record
  • Night-time temperatures were warmer than average throughout Adelaide and the Hills, though not as much above average as the daytime temperatures
  • The monthly mean minimum temperature for the Greater Adelaide region as a whole was second-coolest on record for September (behind September 1969), while overall nights for April were warmest on record
  • Annual mean minimum temperatures ranged from equalling the average at Rosedale to 1.3 °C above average at Mount Barker
  • Adelaide Airport had its highest mean daily minimum temperature on record
  • Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) and Edinburgh RAAF equalled their highest mean temperature on record

Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira)

  • Total reported rainfall for Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) was 364.4 mm, which is 69% of the long-term average of 528.3 mm (although there were two days of missing rainfall data at the site in July; the estimated total for the year is at least 374 mm but still well below average)
  • The mean daily maximum temperature for Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) was 23.2 °C, which is 1.4 °C above the long-term average of 21.8 °C. The warmest day was 42.3 °C on 6 January, and the coolest day was on 19 July when the temperature reached 12.2 °C
  • The mean daily minimum temperature for Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) was 12.9 °C, which is 0.9 °C above the long-term average of 12.0 °C. The coldest morning was 2.9 °C on 28 June, and the warmest morning was on 9 February when the minimum temperature was 28.7 °C

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Extremes in 2018
Hottest day 44.8 °C at Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) on 19 Jan
Warmest days on average 24.1 °C at Parafield Airport
Coolest days on average 17.8 °C at Mount Lofty
Coldest day 5.5 °C at Mount Lofty on 6 Aug
Coldest night -1.5 °C at Mount Barker on 26 Jun
-1.5 °C at Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) on 4 Sep
Coolest nights on average 9.2 °C at Mount Lofty
Warmest nights on average 13.2 °C at Noarlunga
Warmest night 28.7 °C at Adelaide (Kent Town) and Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) on 9 Feb
Warmest on average overall 18.2 °C at Adelaide (Kent Town)
Coolest on average overall 13.5 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 998.9 mm at Uraidla
Driest overall 269.2 mm at Gawler
Wettest day 65.2 mm at Lenswood and Mount Lofty (Cleland Conservation Park) on 6 Aug
Strongest wind gust 117 km/h at Mount Crawford AWS on 17 Jul

Lowest annual total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Annual
average
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 334.5 301.8 in 1994* 467.5

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a lower value has gone unreported




Record highest temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Mount Lofty 37.9 on 28 Jan 36.3 on 25 Jan 2003 20 15.4



Record highest annual mean daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 24.0 = 24.0 in 2007 54 22.6



Record highest annual mean daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Adelaide Airport 12.7 12.5 in 2013 62 11.5



Record highest annual mean temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 18.1 = 18.1 in 1914 91 16.9
Edinburgh RAAF 17.8 = 17.8 in 2013 45 16.9



Summary statistics for 2018
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean
for
2018
Diff
from
average
Highest
for
2018
Mean
for
2018
Diff
from
average
Lowest
for
2018
Total
for
2018
Average
annual
total
Rank
of
2018
Fraction
of annual
average
Adelaide (Kent Town) 23.6 +1.2 44.1 28 Jan 12.8 +0.5 2.3 28 Jun 427.4 547.6 low 78%
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 23.2 +1.4 42.3 6 Jan 12.9 +0.9 2.9 28 Jun 364.4* 528.3 v low 69%
Adelaide Airport 22.6 +1.0 41.4 6 Jan 12.7 +1.2 2.2 28 Jun 298.2 439.9 low 68%
Edinburgh RAAF 23.8 +1.1 44.2 19 Jan 11.7 +0.6 -0.2 26 Jun 284.6 431.0 low 66%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 19.9 +0.6 40.0 28 Jan 10.7 +0.3 1.3 26 Jun 574.4 707.6 v low 81%
Mount Barker 21.6 +1.6 42.1 28 Jan 9.4 +1.3 -1.5 26 Jun 623.8 764.4 low 82%
Mount Crawford AWS 19.8 +0.7 40.7 28 Jan 10.0 +0.2 1.0 26 Jun 507.6 656.0 low 77%
Mount Lofty 17.8 +2.4 37.9 28 Jan 9.2 +0.6 0.0 26 Jun 852.6
Noarlunga 22.2 +0.5 41.3 27 Dec 13.2 +0.5 3.8 13 Jul 289.2^ 448.4
Parafield Airport 24.1 +1.7 44.1 28 Jan 11.6 +0.4 -0.7 28 Jun 326.6 451.2 v low 72%
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 24.0 +1.4 44.8 19 Jan 10.0 0.0 -1.5 4 Sep 334.5 467.5 low 72%

* note: there are two days of missing rainfall data at the site in July; estimated total for the year is at least 374 mm

^ note: there are several days of missing rainfall data at the site during 2018; estimated total for the year is at least 319 mm


Notes

The annual climate summary lists the main features of the weather in Greater Adelaide using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.
The Australian annual climate statement provides a comprehensive summary of Australia's climate during 2018. Information about changes and long-term trends in Australia's climate can be found in State of the Climate 2018.

This summary includes data from observing sites in or near the Greater Adelaide “Greater Capital City Statistical Area” (GCCSA). The Australian Bureau of Statistics designed the GCCSAs to “include the population within the urban area of the city, as well as people who regularly socialise, shop or work within the city, and live in small towns and rural areas surrounding the city. It is important to note that GCCSAs do not define the built up edge of the city. They provide a stable definition for these cities and are designed for the output of a range of social and economic survey data.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 11 am on Thursday 3 January 2019. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites are long-term means based on observations from all available years of record, which vary widely from site to site. They are not shown for sites with less than 10 years of record, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.
The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of long-term average rain.

The Rank indicates how rainfall this time compares with the climate record for the site, based on the decile ranking (very low rainfall is in decile 1, low in decile 2 or 3, average in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9 and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of average shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
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