Melbourne in 2012: A mostly normal year

Melbourne in 2012 was characterised by:

  • Warmer than average night-time temperatures
  • Close to normal daytime temperatures
  • Close to normal rainfall totals.

The year began with warmer than normal days and nights. The hottest day for the year was 2 January when Avalon Airport recorded 41.1 C. Rainfall was below average in January but February soon made up for it. The warmest night for the year was 26 February when Melbourne Regional Office recorded 24.7 C.

Rainfall around Melbourne was above average during autumn. The wettest day of the year was 25 April when Scoresby Research Institute recorded 63.4 mm. Average daytime temperatures were mostly close to normal but minimum temperatures were warmer than usual thanks to some very much warmer than normal minimum temperatures in May.

Winter rainfall totals were very much below average at some stations. Daytime temperatures were mostly close to normal. Night-time temperatures ranged from average to very much above average. The coldest day of the year was 1 July when Coldstream recorded 9.0 C and the coldest night of the year was 8 July when Coldstream recorded 3.8 C.

Melbourne was much drier than usual in spring 2012, many station recorded half their normal rainfall in September and less than half their normal rainfall in October. Daytime temperatures were warmer than usual but night-time temperatures were typical for the season.

December rainfall totals were average to below average. Daytime temperatures were warmer than usual but night-time temperatures were mixed (some stations recorded warmer than normal temperatures whilst others recorded cooler than normal temperatures). December brought with it the warmest night of the year with Laverton RAAF recording 26.0 C on the 24th.

Summary

Rainfall totals for 2012 were close to normal in the Melbourne area. Melbourne's east normally records more rainfall than its west and this year was no different. The wettest station overall was Cerberus with 877.8 mm, while the driest was Laverton RAAF with 465.8 mm. The warmest station on average (an average of maximum and minimum temperatures) was Melbourne Regional Office with 16.4 C whilst the coolest was Coldstream with 14.0 C. The warmest days on average were recorded at Melbourne Regional Office with 20.8 C whilst the coolest days on average were recorded at Cerberus with 19.2 C. The coolest nights on average were recorded at Coldstream with 7.8 C and the warmest nights on average were recorded at Melbourne Regional Office with 12.0 C.

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Extremes in 2012
Hottest day 41.1 C at Avalon Airport on 2 Jan
Warmest days on average 20.8 C at Melbourne Regional Office
Coolest days on average 19.2 C at Cerberus
Coldest day 9.0 C at Coldstream on 1 Jul
Coldest night -3.8 C at Coldstream on 8 Jul
Coolest nights on average 7.8 C at Coldstream
Warmest nights on average 12.0 C at Melbourne Regional Office
Warmest night 26.0 C at Laverton RAAF on 24 Dec
Warmest on average overall 16.4 C at Melbourne Regional Office
Coolest on average overall 14.0 C at Coldstream
Wettest overall 877.8 mm at Cerberus
Driest overall 465.8 mm at Laverton RAAF
Wettest day 63.4 mm at Scoresby Research Institute on 25 Apr
Highest wind gust 98 km/h at Melbourne Airport on 5 Feb
98 km/h at Melbourne Airport on 26 Feb
98 km/h at Melbourne Airport on 5 Sep

Summary statistics for 2012
Maximum temperatures
(C)
Minimum temperatures
(C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean
for
2012
Diff
from
average
Highest
for
2012
Mean
for
2012
Diff
from
average
Lowest
for
2012
Total
for
2012
Average
annual
total
Rank
of
2012
Fraction
of annual
average
East Central (district 86)
Bundoora (Latrobe University) 20.1 +0.1 38.9 23 Dec 10.0 +0.4 -1.2 7 Jul 647.6 673.8 average 96%
Cerberus 19.2 +0.2 39.5 2 Jan 10.1 +0.4 0.3 8 Jul 877.8 734.6 high 119%
Coldstream 20.1 -0.1 37.2 23 Dec 7.8 +0.5 -3.8 8 Jul 769.6 746.3 average 103%
Cranbourne Botanic Gardens 38.4 2 Jan 9.8 +0.2 0.7 12 Jun 861.6 830.2 average 104%
Essendon Airport 20.3 +0.7 39.3 29 Nov 10.2 +1.0 0.0 7 Jul 482.8 591.8 low 82%
Melbourne Airport 20.2 +0.5 39.3 29 Nov 9.6 +0.1 -0.2 8 Jul 482.6 547.1 average 88%
Melbourne Regional Office 20.8 +1.0 40.0 2 Jan 12.0 +1.8 2.3 7 Jul 601.8 649.5 average 93%
Moorabbin Airport 20.0 +0.3 39.7 2 Jan 10.6 +0.6 -0.8 8 Jul 650.2 717.0 low 91%
Scoresby Research Institute 20.1 +0.6 39.0 29 Nov 9.9 +0.4 0.3 27 Jun 859.6 866.6 average 99%
Viewbank 20.6 -0.1 39.1 29 Nov 10.0 +0.2 -1.2 7 Jul 624.4 679.9 average 92%
West Central (district 87)
Avalon Airport 20.4 +0.2 41.1 2 Jan 9.5 +0.2 -2.1 8 Jul 534.6 463.3 high 115%
Laverton RAAF 20.1 +0.4 39.5 2 Jan 9.9 +0.6 -0.6 7 Jul 465.8 542.1 low 86%

Notes

A Annual Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in Melbourne Metropolitan Area and Environs using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. Later information, including data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review, usually published in the fourth week of the month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 10 am on Wednesday 2 January 2013. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

Averages 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.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries