Monday, 1 June 2009 - Monthly Climate Summary for Sydney - Greater Sydney - Product code IDCKGC25L0

Mild, wet days in Sydney during May

  • Wet month - above average rainfall for all metropolitan area
  • Mild days - above average maximum temperatures
  • Mild nights - above average minimum temperatures
  • Sunny month, above average sunshine hours

An archive of previous monthly summaries for Sydney - Greater Sydney is also available, as are summaries for other states and many other climate summaries and diagnostics.

Rainfall

Following a wet April, the Sydney metropolitan area again recorded above average rainfall during May. Observatory Hill had a total of 125.8 mm, which is close the historical May average of 120 mm. The rain fell on a total of 15 rain days, slightly above the historical average of 12 days. Much of the metropolitan area recorded rainfall that was 100 to 180% above the historic average for May. The wettest suburbs were along the coastal fringe and on the North Shore while the driest were in the far west. The highest May totals were 206 mm at Randwick in the eastern suburbs and 183 mm at Terrey Hills in the north. The lowest total was only 65 mm at Box Hill in the western suburbs.

Most of the month's rainfall occurred during one main weather event on the 19th to 23rd associated with an east coast low on the North Coast of NSW which caused moist easterly winds and heavy showers in the Sydney region. Although there were severe coastal thunderstorms on the 2nd, the heavy rain and flooding was confined to just a few coastal suburbs with areas west of the CBD remaining dry. The wettest single day over the metropolitan area (for the 24 hour period to 9am on 3rd) was 88 mm at Collaroy in Sydney's northern beaches, the wettest May day on record (short record of 27 years). The next highest was 77 mm at Randwick, the wettest day in May since 1974. Flash flooding at nearby Coogee washed away many vehicles as roads turned into rivers. The Coogee Bowling Club sustained major flood damage when storm water drains overflowed.

Parts of the lower Warragamba Dam catchment recorded moderate rain during May, however, the upper catchment received only light falls. May totals ranged from about 120 mm around Lake Burragorang to only 20 or 30 mm near Goulburn in the upper catchment. Sydney's storage level rose during May and was at 61% of capacity at the end of the month. Recent rainfall and current levels in Sydney's water catchments can be found on the Sydney Catchment Authority web site http://www.sca.nsw.gov.au/dams/rainfall.html

Some sites had their highest May daily rainfall on record.

Temperatures

Sydney experienced mild days during May. Observatory Hill recorded an average maximum temperature of 20.7°C, which is 1.3°C above the historical May average. All other locations in the metropolitan area recorded maximum temperatures that were close to the historic average. May weather was dominated by high pressure systems in the Tasman Sea which tended to block the movement of cold fronts preventing their passage over the Sydney region. The lack of any significant southerly changes, as well as mostly sunny weather during the first half of the month, contributed towards the mild daytime temperatures.

Mild nights were also experienced in Sydney during May. The average minimum temperature at Sydney Observatory Hill was 12.5°C or 1.0°C above the historic average. However, over the remainder of the Sydney region, especially locations away from the coast, minimum temperatures were close to average.

There was a considerable variation in temperatures over the Sydney region during May, with extremes ranging from a high of 24.7°C at Sydney Olympic Park on the 4th to a low of 2.4°C at Camden on the 12th and 17th. There was a lesser range in temperatures along the coast; at Observatory Hill the highest temperature was 23.4°C on the 26th and the lowest was 9.6°C on the 12th. The coldest day in the metropolitan area was at Terrey Hills AWS which recorded a maximum of 14.5°C on the 30th during a period of cold southerly winds.

Wind

Prevailing winds in coastal Sydney were between E and S for nearly 70% of the time during the afternoons compared to the normal frequency of 49% from this direction. The only significant southerly change was on the 28th when a trough brought several days of cooler southerly air to the Sydney region. The strongest wind gust was 76 km/h at Wattamolla (Royal NP) on the 30th.

Other phenomena

There were 2 thunderstorms recorded in Sydney during May, the most severe was on the 2nd with heavy rain and flooding in the eastern suburbs. The average daily sunshine in Sydney during May was 6.5 hours per day, which is slightly above the historic average of 6.1 hours per day. However, it is still the lowest amount of sunshine for May since 2003.

Further information

Mike De Salis
Climate Officer
NSW Climate Services Centre
NSW Regional Office
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (02) 9296 1555
Email climate.nsw@bom.gov.au

Extremes for the Sydney region

Hottest day
Highest temperature
24.7°C at Sydney Olympic Park on the 4th
Warmest days on average
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
21.1°C at Liverpool
Coolest days on average
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
18.4°C at Springwood
Coldest day
Lowest daily maximum temperature
14.5°C at Terrey Hills AWS on the 30th
Coldest night
Lowest temperature
2.4°C at Camden Airport AWS on the 12th
2.4°C at Camden Airport AWS on the 17th
Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
7.7°C at Camden Airport AWS
Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
12.5°C at Sydney (Observatory Hill)
Warmest night
Highest daily minimum temperature
17.4°C at Sydney (Observatory Hill) on the 24th
17.4°C at Sydney Airport on the 24th
Wettest overall
Highest total rainfall
206.2 mm at Randwick
182.8 mm at Terrey Hills AWS
Driest overall
Lowest total rainfall
65.0 mm at Box Hill
Wettest day
Highest daily rainfall
88.0 mm at Collaroy on the 3rd
76.6 mm at Randwick on the 3rd
73.0 mm at Cronulla South on the 20th
Highest wind gust
76 km/h at Wattamolla (Royal NP) on the 30th

Records

Record highest May daily rainfall
Highest daily rainfall
in May 2009 (mm)
Previous highest
for May
Years of
record
Collaroy (Long Reef Golf Club) 88.0 on the 3rd 87.0 on the 2nd in 2001 27



Summaries for the Sydney region

This table is very wide and may not fit if printed.

Summary statistics for May 2009
Maximum temperatures
for May
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for May
(°C)
Rainfall
for May
(millimetres)
Mean for
May
2009
Diff
from
average
Highest for
May
2009
Mean for
May
2009
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
May
2009
Total for
May
2009
Average
for
May
Rank of
May
2009
Fraction of
May
average
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 20.7 +1.3 23.4 26th 12.5 +1.0 9.6 12th 125.8 120.7 average 104%
Bankstown Airport AWS 20.6 +0.2 23.1 4th 9.7 +0.1 5.0 14th 120.0 70.2 high 171%
Camden Airport AWS 20.7 +0.1 23.2 4th 7.7 +0.5 2.4 12th 82.2 60.6 high 136%
Parramatta 20.7 +0.2 24.0 4th 10.2 +0.1 6.2 13th 95.8 71.9 average 133%
Penrith Lakes AWS 20.7 −0.3 23.6 4th 10.2 +0.6 4.7 14th 83.4 44.5 high 187%
Prospect Reservoir 20.6 +0.4 23.8 4th 10.0 0.0 5.8 12th 91.4 72.1 high 127%
Richmond RAAF 20.3 −0.4 23.5 4th 8.5 +0.7 2.7 17th 81.6 56.2 average 145%
Springwood 18.4   21.0 9th 10.0   7.1 12th 132.4 74.4 high 178%
Sydney Airport 20.4 +0.5 23.6 4th 12.4 +1.5 9.1 12th 118.0 99.8 average 118%
Terrey Hills AWS 19.0   22.3 4th 11.1   7.7 12th 182.8

Daily rainfall

Most values are the precipitation in the 24 hours to 9 am on the day indicated. Days marked with »» are part of a longer accumulation, which is marked like this on the final day. Values over 100 mm have been rounded to the nearest whole millimetre. Days marked with - have a rainfall report of zero; days left blank have no rainfall report (which often indicates no rain fell).
This table is very wide; you may have to scroll sideways to see all the days, and you may need to set the paper to 'landscape' to print.

Hunter (61)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Webbs Ck-Wisemans Ferry (Hawkesbury Rive - - - - - - - - - - 0.6 - - - - - - - 0.6 3.0 4.2 35.4 14.8 0.8 0.2 - - 1.2 - - 9.0
Central Tablelands (South) (63)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Sackville Ferry (Hawkesbury River) - 0.2 - 0.2 0.2 - 0.2 0.2 0.2 - 0.2 0.2 0.2 - - - - 0.2 0.4 4.0 16.6 44.6 25.4 4.0 - 0.4 0.8 2.4 - 0.6 4.0
Springwood Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - - - - - - 0.8 13.0 19.2 20.4 45.2 19.6 - 0.2 0.2 4.2 0.4 0.4 6.8
Valley Heights (Sun Valley Rd)
-
- - 0.4 - - - - 3.0 - - - - - - - 0.6 14.0 19.2 20.0 42.0 15.0 0.2 0.4 0.4 4.0
2.2 8.0
Metropolitan (East) (66)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Abbotsford (Blackwall Point Rd)




3.0



3.4






10.0 14.0 38.0 7.0
»» 16.8

3.4
13.0 9.0
Auburn (Rosnay Golf Club) 1.0 - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 1.0 13.0 27.0 2.0 17.0 1.0 - - - 2.0 - 5.0 15.0
Audley (Royal National Park) 3.0 - - - - 22.0 - - - - 1.0 - 1.0 - - - - - - 56.0 21.0 5.0 13.0 - - - - 5.0 - 5.0 18.0
Avalon (Wollstonecraft Ave) 1.0 - 35.0 - 1.0 4.0 - - - 3.0 1.0 - - - - - - - - 15.0 11.0 22.0 18.0 4.0 - - - - 1.0 6.0 33.0
Bankstown Airport AWS 0.2 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 6.0 25.0 38.0 4.0 17.0 1.0 - - -
- 2.2 26.4
Belrose (Evelyn Place) 0.8
0.8

2.2


0.2 2.6






1.8 14.8 12.4 23.0 33.6 2.2


1.4 0.4 4.2 34.6
Campbelltown (Ingleburn (Long Point)) - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 8.0 30.0 32.0 4.0 41.0 1.0 - - - 10.0 1.0 - 32.0
Canterbury Racecourse AWS 1.6 - - - 0.4 0.6 0.2 - - - 4.6 0.2 - - - - - - 1.2 28.4 36.2 4.6 20.0 3.2 - - - 3.4 1.2 14.0 9.6
Chatswood Bowling Club 3.0 - 6.0 - - 1.0 - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 20.0 33.0 4.0 14.0 3.0 - - - 3.0 - 8.0 16.0
Collaroy (Long Reef Golf Club)

»» 88.2 5.4




4.8







13.0 9.2 17.8 18.6




1.2
25.4
Concord Golf Club



0.6 0.4



2.4






9.2
39.8
15.0 2.0


3.0
10.2
Cronulla South Bowling Club 1.4
3.0 5.0 12.0 3.0


»» 2.0
9.4





73.0 10.6 3.0 7.0



4.4
37.0
Guildford (Woodville Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - - 13.0 27.0 3.0 16.0 1.0 - - - 3.0 - 3.0 11.0
Holsworthy Control Range 1.6 - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - 5.2 33.8 30.2 1.0 30.4 1.0 0.2 0.2 - 8.8 - - 14.4
Lidcombe (Carnarvon Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - 23.0 32.0 2.0 24.0 1.0 - - - 4.0 - 6.0 14.0
Liverpool-Scrivener St (Georges River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 18.0 31.0 4.0 14.0 - - - - 5.0 - - 8.0
Lucas Heights (ANSTO) 6.0








0.4
2.4




0.4 28.2 22.8 7.6 19.8



7.0


Manley / Warringah (Allambie) 2.5 - 8.5 - - 0.5 - - - 0.5 2.0 - -
- - - - - 21.0 13.5 4.5 9.0 - 0.5 - - 1.0 5.0 4.0 34.5
Manley / Warringah (Belrose) 0.5 - 0.5 - - 1.0 0.5 -
- 2.0
- - - - - - - 14.5 11.5 7.5 29.5 1.5 -
0.5 1.0 - 4.0 23.5
Marrickville Golf Club 2.0 - 1.0 - 1.0 - - - - 1.0 4.0 - 1.0 - - - - - 3.0 23.0 29.0 3.0 16.0 - - - - 3.0 - 18.0 10.0
Milperra Bridge (Georges River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 24.0 38.0 6.0 16.0 - - - - 3.0 - - 18.0
Mona Vale Golf Club 0.8 - 57.2 0.6 1.8 0.2 - 0.4 - 2.8 3.4 - - - - - - - 0.6 9.2 3.6 8.0 4.4 3.2 - - - 1.0 12.0 14.6 26.2
North Turramurra (Dryden Rd) -


1.0




1.8






2.2 24.2 11.8 45.6 44.6 9.4

0.4 1.8
4.8 14.0
Parramatta (Erts) - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - 3.0 11.0 30.0 7.0 27.0 1.0 - - - 2.0 - 3.0 9.0
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 0.2 - - - 0.6 - - - - - 1.2 - - - - - - - 3.4 19.4 18.0 9.2 22.0 1.4 - - 0.2 4.0 - 4.0 12.2
Peakhurst Golf Club - - - - - 3.0 - - - 1.0 - - 1.0 - - - - - 2.0 24.0 30.0 1.0 24.0 2.0 - - - 5.0 - 8.0 26.0
Randwick Bowling Club 11.0
76.6 0.4 3.4 1.0


6.4 1.0 1.2





3.0 22.8 35.0 2.2




4.8
32.0 5.4
Riverview Observatory 0.8 - »» 3.8 1.2 2.2 - - - »» 5.4 0.2 0.2 - - - - - 14.0 16.6 31.6 4.8 23.8 1.4 - 0.2 - 4.0 2.6 9.0 9.6
Rose Bay (Royal Sydney Golf Club) 10.8
46.6 0.2 3.2
0.8 1.2
5.2 0.6






7.4 19.6 26.4 3.2 20.4 0.4


3.4 13.0 17.4 17.4
Sans Souci (Public School) 7.0 - 6.0 - 5.0 3.0 - - - 1.0 - - 2.0 - - - - - 2.0 37.0 23.0 - 10.0 1.0 - - - 4.0 2.0 22.0 10.0
St Ives (Richmond Avenue)

0.1






3.8






1.8 28.0 13.0 43.2 33.6 9.8 0.2 0.2 0.2 1.2
5.0 23.2
Strathfield Golf Club 1.0 - - - - - - - - 1.0 1.0 1.0 - - - - - - 11.0 20.0 34.0 4.0 20.0 3.0 - - - 3.0 - 9.0 17.0
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 5.6 - 13.0 - 1.2 0.8 - - - 0.8 1.4 - - - - - - - 2.6 20.2 27.2 4.6 17.6 1.6 - - - 3.6 - 15.0 10.6
Sydney Airport AMO 3.2 0.2 9.0 - 1.8 0.8
- - 0.8 6.4 - - - - - - - 3.2 22.8 20.0 0.6 24.8 0.4 - - - 3.2 0.6 16.0 4.2
Sydney Olympic Park (Sydney Olympic Pk A 0.2 - - - 1.2 - - - - - 1.8 0.2 0.2 - - - - - 0.8 13.2 30.2 5.2 13.0 1.0 - - - 2.6 - 8.2 14.2
Terrey Hills AWS - - 0.8 - - 3.4 - - - - 4.8 - - - - - - - 1.0 40.0 11.6 52.4 28.2 11.8 - - - 1.0 0.6 1.8 25.4
Turramurra (Kissing Point Road)

0.4

0.8



1.0







20.6 13.0 29.0 55.6 5.6


3.0
7.2 13.0
West Pymble (Wyuna Road)

0.6

1.6



1.2






2.0 20.0 27.6 9.0 27.4 3.4
0.2 0.6 3.4
8.6 14.0
Metropolitan (West) (67)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Abbotsbury (Fairfield City Farm) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 17.0 32.0 3.0 20.0 1.0 - - - 4.0 - - 7.0
Badgerys Creek AWS - - - - - - - - - - 0.4 0.4 - - - - - - 1.0 17.2 46.4 5.0 15.8 1.6 0.2 - - 14.2 - - 11.4
Baulkham Hills (Swimming Pool ) - - - - - - 0.5 - - - 1.5 - - - - - - - - 18.5 10.5 16.0 35.5 6.5 - - 0.5 4.0 1.5 2.0 10.0
Baulkham Hills Eucalyptus Ct - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 22.5 20.0 7.5 32.5 3.0 - - 0.5 4.0 - 2.0 12.0
Berowra (Goodwyn Road)









1.6







23.2 10.0 37.2 42.4 12.0




3.0 37.2
Blacktown (Dog Pound) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 22.0 17.0 5.5 19.0 1.0 - - - 3.5 - 0.5 12.5
Box Hill (Hynds Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 9.0 5.0 19.0 18.0 5.0 - - - 3.0 - - 6.0
Castle Hill (Kathleen Ave)



0.2




1.0






0.4 24.0 6.6 21.5 38.2 6.0


4.0 0.1 2.2 10.4
Glenorie (Old Northern Rd)


















5.2 23.2 40.0 6.0



2.0

12.4
Greystanes (Cumberland Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 2.0 11.0 26.0 7.0 25.0 0.5 - - - 3.0 1.0 0.5 11.5
Hawkesbury River (Sackville Downstream) - - - - 0.5 - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - - 0.5 3.5 7.0 26.0 23.0 3.0 - - - 2.0 - 0.5 2.5
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - 0.8 16.0 26.2 3.8 17.0 2.0 - - 0.2 3.0 - - 7.8
Kelso Ck (Kelso Creek U/S Levee (Georges 1.5 - - - - - - - 16.5 - 0.5 - - 0.5 - - - - 10.5 31.5 30.5 1.0 26.5 1.0 - - - 5.5 - 1.0 14.5
Kings Langley (NSW Soccer Federation) - - - - - - - - - 0.5 1.5 - - - - - - - - 18.5 9.0 14.5 27.0 4.0 - - 0.5 4.5 - 0.5 8.5
Kings Langley (Solander Rd) - - - - - - - - - - 1.2 - - - - - - - 0.2 16.0 13.8 9.2 33.4 2.6 - 0.2 0.4 3.4 - 1.4 8.8
Liverpool (Michael Wenden Centre) - - - 0.2 1.0 0.2 0.2 - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - 1.8 18.8 35.2 3.4 15.6 1.2 0.2 0.2 - 7.0 - - 9.8
Lower Portland (Hawkesbury River) - - - - - - 0.2 - - - 0.2 - - - 1.0 - - - - 3.6 17.8 45.8 23.0 2.8 - 0.2 1.0 1.4 - 0.2 5.2
Maroota (Tobruk) 0.2 0.2 - 0.2 0.6 - - - - - 0.4 - - - - - - - 0.4 4.8 13.2 61.6 30.0 2.0 - 0.4 0.6 0.8 - 0.2 7.8
Merrylands (Welsford Street)


















13.6 39.4 8.4 30.8 2.6


4.2

11.6
Merrylands West (Finlayson Creek) - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 3.5 10.5 30.0 7.0 18.0 2.0 - - - 2.5 - 0.5 11.0
North Parramatta (Burnside Homes) - - - - 0.5 - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - 3.0 20.5 16.5 5.5 20.0 1.0 - - - 3.0 - 3.5 11.0
North Rocks (Muirfield Golf Club) - - 0.5 - - 0.5 - - - 0.5 0.5 - - - - - - - - 19.5 25.0 7.5 40.0 3.5 - - - 4.0 0.5 4.5 12.5
Northmead Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - 0.5 2.5 - - - - - - - - 17.5 23.5 6.0 24.5 2.5 - - - 4.0 - 2.0 10.0
Parramatta (Baulkham Hills West (Sierra - - - - - - - - - 0.5 1.5 - - - - - - - - 19.0 15.0 8.0 32.5 3.0 - - 0.5 3.5 - 1.5 7.5
Penrith Lakes AWS - 0.2 - - - - 0.2 - - - 0.4 - 0.2 - - - - - - 11.8 8.2 14.4 30.0 5.0 0.2 0.4 0.4 2.6 - 0.2 9.2
Prospect Reservoir - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 18.0 23.2 6.4 25.2 0.9 - - - 3.2 - 1.0 13.0
Richmond RAAF - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 0.2 - - - - - - - 6.0 7.0 23.6 32.6 4.4 0.2 - 0.2 2.0 0.6 - 4.6
Seven Hills (Radio FM 103.2) - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 19.5 19.5 9.0 25.5 1.0 0.5 - - 3.0 3.0 0.5 11.5
Seven Hills (Collins St)









1.4







17.8 17.6 7.5 37.0 2.9


3.9

9.0
St Clair (Juba Close) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 18.0 16.0 5.0 16.0 2.0 - - 1.0 3.0 - - 5.0
Toongabbie Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - 0.5 20.5 20.0 7.0 25.5 2.0 - - - 3.5 - 1.5 10.5
Toongabbie Ck (Redbank Road (Toongabbee - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - - - - - - 2.5 15.5 16.0 7.0 17.0 0.5 - 0.5 - 2.5 - 2.5 12.0
West Pennant Hills (Cumberland S F Alert - - - - 0.5 - 0.5 - - - 0.5 - - - 0.5 - - - - 19.0 10.0 20.0 38.5 5.0 - - 0.5 3.5 - 4.0 13.5
Willmot (Resolution Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 11.0 5.0 16.0 23.0 3.0 - - - 2.0 - - 8.0
Illawarra (68)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Camden Airport AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.2 19.6 17.6 3.8 21.4 - - - - 10.2 - - 7.4
Camden Valley Golf Resort - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 17.0 23.0 5.0 15.0 - - 1.0 5.0 7.0 - - 7.0
Campbelltown (Kentlyn (Georges River Roa - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - 6.0 24.0 22.0 9.0 20.0 1.0 - - - 9.0 - - 26.0
Campbelltown (Mount Annan) - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 18.6 21.4 4.4 14.8 - - 0.2 - 9.4 - - 10.4
Rossmore (South Creek) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 16.0 31.0 3.0 24.0 1.0 - - 1.0 12.0 - - 14.0

Notes

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Monday 1 June 2009. 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.