Perth in 2014: A warm and dry year

All sites in the Perth metropolitan area recorded above average temperatures and below average rainfall in 2014.

  • Above-average mean maximum temperatures across the Perth metropolitan area; fourth-highest for Perth Metro
  • Above average mean minimum temperatures across Perth
  • Below-average rainfall for most sites

Mean maximum temperatures in 2014 ranged from around 23 °C on the islands and in the hills to about 25 °C across much of the coastal plain, and near 26 °C in the northeast suburbs, and were generally between 0.5 °C and 1.0 °C above average. Monthly mean maximum temperatures were above the average for most sites in the metropolitan area in almost all months, apart from May, November, and December, and were record warm for some sites in August and September. Mean minimum temperatures for 2014 were also above average at all Perth metropolitan sites, ranging from near 16 °C on the islands, to about 14 °C near the coast, and between 12 °C and 13 °C on the coastal plain and in the hills, and about 0.5 °C to 0.7 °C above normal. Below average monthly mean minimum temperatures were confined to June, November, and December across Perth in 2014.

Annual rainfall for 2014 ranged from about 500 mm on the islands and in the far northeast of the metropolitan area, to 600 mm to 700 mm on much of the coastal plain, to about 1000 mm in the hills. Rainfall was generally near average in most months, with only May seeing above average rainfall across the Perth metropolitan area. Little rainfall was recorded in January, February, and December, whilst June totals were generally 50% to 80% of normal and had the biggest impact on annual rainfall for most sites, leading to a below average year.

Notable events in 2014

  • A hot spell across the Perth metropolitan area on 11 and 12 January saw consecutive 40 °C days for many sites, as well as unusually warm overnight temperatures. A few sites recorded their highest January minimum on record, and Perth Metro (117 years of record) and Pearce RAAF (64 years of record) both recorded their highest minimum temperature for any month.
  • A fire was reported in Parkerville, about 30km east of Perth on 12 January and affected the townships of Parkerville, Stoneville, and Mount Helena. Fifty-seven houses were destroyed and approximately 386 hectares were burnt. One fatality was attributed to the event.
  • Perth recorded a long dry spell from late October 2013 to late April 2014 with little rainfall recorded during that period. Perth Metro recorded only three rain days from November to February, the lowest for that period since records commenced in 1876.
  • A mild night was reported across the Perth metropolitan area on the evening of 1 July and morning of 2 July, with a number of sites including Perth Metro recording their highest July minimum temperature on record on the 2nd.
  • A strong cold front produced heavy showers, thunderstorms, and squally winds in the Perth metropolitan area on 14 July causing power outages and significant damage to property. Three tornadoes were reported in the western suburbs of Perth, and two men died tragically when their respirators failed as a result of a power outage.
  • A strong cold front and cut-off low produced thunderstorms and squally winds in the Perth area on the evening of 17 August, with damage to roofs from fallen trees reported. In Fremantle port, a container ship broke its moorings and crashed into the Fremantle rail bridge. A second cargo vessel also broke its moorings and hit a refuelling vessel near the bridge.
  • August was a record warm month with all reporting sites recording their highest August mean maximum temperature. Perth Metro recorded a mean maximum temperature of 21.6 °C, exceeding the previous August record by 1.2 °C (set in 2013).
  • Two strong cold fronts produced mainly minor damage in the Perth area from 7 to 9 September. A tornado likely moved through Forrestfield and an apartment block in Attadale lost its roof.
  • A deep trough off the west coast resulted in all Perth metropolitan sites recording their highest September temperature on record on the 20th, with maxima reaching the mid-thirties. Many sites with relatively short periods of record (less than 50 years) broke their previous September record by 3 °C to 4 °C, whilst Perth Metro exceeded its previous high, in 117 years of record, by 1.5 °C.
  • A severe thunderstorm tracked over the Perth metropolitan area on 18 October, producing heavy rainfall and large amounts of small hail.
  • A fire at Whiteman Park in the northern Perth suburbs burnt 367 hectares of bushland on 14 December.

Further information

Media
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Extremes in 2014
Hottest day 44.5 °C at Pearce RAAF on 11 Jan
Warmest days on average 26.4 °C at Pearce RAAF
Coolest days on average 22.8 °C at Garden Island HSF
22.8 °C at Rottnest Island
23.0 °C at Bickley
Coldest day 11.8 °C at Bickley on 22 Jul
Coldest night 0.1 °C at Jandakot Aero on 15 Jun
Coolest nights on average 11.8 °C at Bickley
Warmest nights on average 16.3 °C at Rottnest Island
14.4 °C at Swanbourne
Warmest night 31.2 °C at Pearce RAAF on 12 Jan
Warmest on average overall 19.7 °C at Swanbourne
Coolest on average overall 17.4 °C at Bickley
Wettest overall 1036.6 mm at Bickley
Wettest day 71.8 mm at Bickley on 18 Jun
Strongest wind gust 106 km/h at Rottnest Island on 17 Jun
106 km/h at Rottnest Island on 7 Jul

Record highest temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Swanbourne 44.3 on 11 Jan 43.1 on 26 Jan 2012 22 24.1



Record highest daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Pearce RAAF 31.2 on 12 Jan 30.6 on 31 Jan 1984 65 12.2
Perth Metro 29.7 on 12 Jan 29.3 on 8 Feb 1933 & 3 Feb 1962 117 12.8



Summary statistics for 2014
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean
for
2014
Diff
from
average
Highest
for
2014
Mean
for
2014
Diff
from
average
Lowest
for
2014
Total
for
2014
Average
annual
total
Rank
of
2014
Fraction
of annual
average
Bickley 23.0 +0.4 40.7 11 Jan 11.8 +0.6 2.6 1 Aug 1036.6 1081.2 average 96%
Garden Island HSF 22.8 +0.1 41.4 11 Jan 15.6 +0.7 7.0 1 Aug 525.0 607.4 low 86%
Jandakot Aero 25.2 +0.7 43.2 11 Jan 12.1 +0.7 0.1 15 Jun 690.6* 830.0 low 83%*
Pearce RAAF 26.4 +1.2 44.5 11 Jan 12.5 +0.3 1.2 29 Jun 533.8 652.4 low 82%
Perth Airport 25.7 +1.2 43.5 11 Jan 12.8 +0.7 1.0 14 Jun 620.8 770.1 low 81%
Perth Metro 25.4 +0.7 43.3 11 Jan 13.5 +0.7 1.9 14 Jun 674.4 733.3 low 92%
Rottnest Island 22.8 +0.6 36.3 1 Mar 16.3 +0.6 8.7 1 Aug 443.3* 691.7 low 64%*
Swanbourne 25.1 +1.0 44.3 11 Jan 14.4 +0.5 4.8 10 Jul 679.6* 725.4 low 94%*

* note: there are missing data at this site.


Notes

The annual climate summary lists the main features of the weather in Perth 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.

A Climate Summary is generally published on the first working day of each month.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Tuesday 6 January 2015. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

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.

The ACORN-SAT dataset is used for temperature area averages.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries