Monday, 3 March 2008 - Monthly Climate Summary for Canberra rainfall extremes - Product code IDCKGC1xx0

Canberra has 4th coolest February on record

Details

  • Well below average temperatures, 4th coolest February on record
  • Coolest February since 2002
  • Close to average rainfall
  • Sunshine was below average at 8.2 hrs/day, lowest since 2002.

Rainfall

Canberra Airport recorded a total rainfall of 67.0 mm during February, which is slightly above the historical average1 of 56.0 mm. There were 11 rain days during the month, compared to the average of 7 days. Extreme rainfall totals across the ACT ranged from a high of 132 mm at Tharwa to a low of 41 mm at Nicholls. Most of Canberra's rainfall during February was caused by thunderstorms on the 7th and 12th.

Temperatures

Well below average temperatures prevailed over the ACT during February. The mean maximum temperature for Canberra Airport was 24.6ºC, which is 2.7°C below the historical average of 27.3ºC. This is the lowest average maximum temperature since February 2002 and the 4th lowest since records commenced in 1939. The below average temperatures in the ACT were mainly due to the dominance of cool S - E winds which were double the normal frequency from this direction for February.

The average minimum temperature was 12.7ºC, slightly below the historical average of 13.0ºC. It is the coolest average minimum temperature for February since 1999.

The highest temperature in the ACT was 29.8°C at Tuggeranong AWS on the 3rd and the lowest was −2.0°C at Mount Ginini AWS (elevation 1760 m) and 7.7°C at Canberra Airport, both on the 29th.

Wind

The prevailing direction over the ACT during the mornings was S - E for about 70% of the time during the mornings and 45% of the time during the afternoons, both twice the normal frequency from this direction. The highest wind gust recorded was 61 km/hr at Canberra Airport on the 7th associated with thunderstorms.

Other phenomena

Canberra recorded 8.2 hours of sunshine per day, which is below the historical average of 9.0 hours per day. No fogs were observed at Canberra Airport during the month (average 1 fog). Canberra's average wind run of 185.7 km per day was slightly above the historical average of 179 km per day. There were no strong wind days recorded during the month (average 2).

Canberra Airport recorded 3 thunderstorms during February (historical average 4). Storms occurred on 7th, 12th and 21st. The average air pressure of 1012.1 hPa was slightly lower than the normal of 1013.9 hPa. Canberra Airport recorded 170.0 mm of evaporation during February, significantly below the normal of 210 mm.

Further information

Mike De Salis
Climate Information Officer
NSW Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (02) 9296 1555
Email mikede@bom.gov.au

Extremes for the ACT

Hottest day
Highest temperature
29.8°C at Tuggeranong AWS on the 3rd
Warmest days on average
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
24.6°C at Canberra Airport
Coolest days on average
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
24.5°C at Tuggeranong AWS
15.9°C at Mount Ginini AWS
Coldest day
Lowest daily maximum temperature
17.3°C at Canberra Airport on the 28th
11.0°C at Mount Ginini AWS on the 9th,10th, 28th,29th
Coldest night
Lowest temperature
7.7°C at Canberra Airport on the 29th
−2.0°C at Mount Ginini AWS on the 29th
Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
12.7°C at Canberra Airport and at Tuggeranong AWS
6.8°C at Mount Ginini AWS
Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
12.7°C at Canberra Airport and at Tuggeranong AWS
Warmest night
Highest daily minimum temperature
18.2°C at Canberra Airport on the 4th
Wettest overall
Highest total rainfall
132.4 mm at Tharwa and 125.6 mm at Bendora Dam
Driest overall
Lowest total rainfall
41.4 mm at Nicholls (Gungahlin Lakes)
Wettest day
Highest daily rainfall
75.8 mm at Bendora Dam on the 4th
39.6 mm at Ginninderra on the 1st
Highest wind gust
61 km/h at Canberra Airport on the 7th

Summaries for the ACT

Summary statistics for February 2008
Maximum temperatures
for February
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for February
(°C)
Rainfall
for February
(millimetres)
Mean for
February
2008
Diff
from
normal
Highest for
February
2008
Mean for
February
2008
Diff
from
normal
Lowest for
February
2008
Total for
February
2008
Normal
for
February
Rank of
February
2008
Fraction of
February
normal
Canberra Airport 24.6 −2.7 29.6 3rd 12.7 −0.3 7.7 29th 67.0 56.0 normal 120%
Tuggeranong* 24.5 −4.2 29.8 3rd 12.7 −1.5 7.9 29th 84.4 66.5 high 127%

* historic averages for Tuggeranong based on short period 1996−2007. Note, some missing data between 16th and 20th February due to office relocation.


Notes

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 11am on Monday 3 March 2008. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

Normals 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 "normal" 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, normal in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9 and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of normal shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.

Further information

Mike De Salis
Climate Information Officer
NSW Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (02) 9296 1555
Email mikede@bom.gov.au