Sydney in May 2013: A mild end to autumn

  • Dry start to the month, East Coast Low brings late rainfall
  • Fewest cold days on record for May
  • Close to average minimum temperatures
  • Heavy fog on the 28th and 29th.

Rainfall

Sydney Observatory Hill recorded 110.2 mm of rain during May, close to the historical average of 120.6 mm, with totals close to average across the city. Conditions were generally clear during the first part of the month, with just 0.2 mm recorded to 22 May. This is the driest start to May on record, although similar to 2012 (0.4 mm) and 2004 (0.8 mm).

During the last week of the month, a surface trough and East Coast Low produced rain across the city between the 23rd and 25th, with three-day totals of 77.8 mm at Observatory Hill and 106.4 mm at Turramurra. This included daily falls of up to 59 mm at Cronulla on the 23rd and 70.4 mm at Turramurra on the 24th. The ECL was followed by further showers on the 28th, with 28.6 mm recorded at Observatory Hill.

Temperature

The average maximum temperature at Observatory Hill was 21.3 °C, 1.9 °C above the historical average. This is the warmest May since 2007 and the equal-sixth-warmest on record, associated with generally clear conditions and a lack of cold days.

Only four days dropped below 20 °C during May (average 19 days), breaking the record of 5 cold days set in May 1958. Two days reached 25 °C at the start of the month (average 1 day), with 24.9 °C on the 31st, but the month was dominated by mild conditions; 71% of days had maximum temperatures between 20 °C and 23 °C. This included 26 consecutive days above 20 °C between 21 April and 16 May, the equal-latest such spell on record with 22 April - 16 May 1987.

The average minimum temperature at Observatory Hill was 11.9 °C, 0.4 °C above the historical average, while nights were generally cooler than average in western Sydney. Temperatures were generally mild, with four nights below 10 °C (average 9 nights) and only one night above 15 °C (average 2-3 nights). In western Sydney, Richmond recorded nine nights below 5 °C, average for May, with the coldest night reaching -0.1 °C on the 19th.

Some sites had their highest May temperature on record.

Other phenomena

Sydney Airport recorded an average of 7.3 hours of bright sunshine, well above the historical average of 6.2 hours although less sunny than 2012 (7.7 hours). The prevailing wind direction was southerly, with 48% of 3pm winds between SSE and SSW, normal for May. No frosts were observed at the airport, with thunder reported on the 23rd and six strong wind days, although the maximum wind gust was just 67 km/h on the 23rd.

Heavy fog on both the 28th and 29th persisted well into the morning, causing disruption to air traffic. Minimum visibility remained below 1 km between 4:30 and 9:00 am on the 28th and between 2:30 and 9:00 am on the 29th, with mist persisting until 11 am in both cases.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries

Extremes in May 2013
Hottest day 27.8 °C at Richmond RAAF on the 1st
Warmest days on average 21.3 °C at Sydney (Observatory Hill)
Coolest days on average 19.1 °C at Springwood (Valley Heights)
Coldest day 13.1 °C at Springwood (Valley Heights) on the 23rd
Coldest night -0.1 °C at Richmond RAAF on the 19th
Coolest nights on average 6.5 °C at Camden Airport AWS
Warmest nights on average 11.9 °C at Sydney (Observatory Hill)
Warmest night 17.6 °C at Penrith Lakes AWS on the 1st
Warmest on average overall 16.6 °C at Sydney (Observatory Hill)
Coolest on average overall 13.6 °C at Camden Airport AWS
Wettest overall 124.0 mm at Turramurra (Kissing Point Road)
Wettest day 70.4 mm at Turramurra (Kissing Point Road) on the 24th
Highest wind gust 76 km/h at Canterbury Racecourse AWS on the 2nd

Record highest May temperature
Highest temperature
in May 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for May
Years of
record
Average for
May
Camden Airport AWS 27.6 on the 1st 27.5 on the 3rd in 2007 37 20.5


Summary statistics for May 2013
Maximum temperatures
for May
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for May
(°C)
Rainfall
for May
(millimetres)
Mean for
May
2013
Diff
from
average
Highest for
May
2013
Mean for
May
2013
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
May
2013
Total for
May
2013
Average
for
May
Rank of
May
2013
Fraction of
May
average
Badgerys Creek AWS 20.3   26.4 1st 7.5   2.3 15th 52.4
Bankstown Airport AWS 21.0 +0.6 25.7 4th 8.8 -0.7 3.9 15th 44.6 69.3 average 64%
Camden Airport AWS 20.7 +0.2 27.6 1st 6.5 -0.5 1.2 15th 65.6 57.6 high 114%
Campbelltown (Mount Annan) 20.8   27.5 1st 7.1   1.8 15th 70.8
Canterbury Racecourse AWS 20.8   25.3 1st 8.6   3.6 15th 48.2
Holsworthy Aerodrome AWS 20.6   25.7 1st 8.0   2.9 15th 61.4
Holsworthy Control Range 20.5   25.8 1st 7.6   1.9 15th 54.6
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS 20.4   26.1 1st 8.6   2.4 19th 42.6
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 20.7 +0.2 25.5 4th 8.9 -1.0 5.3 15th 44.0 71.8 average 61%
Penrith Lakes AWS 20.9   27.3 1st 8.7   3.9 20th 27.2
Prospect Reservoir 20.6 +0.4 25.9 1st 9.2 -0.7 3.8 19th 40.1 71.4 average 56%
Richmond RAAF 21.0   27.8 1st 7.1   -0.1 19th 29.6
Riverview Observatory 20.5 +0.9 24.5 1st 9.6 -0.3 6.4 15th 88.6 105.6 average 84%
Springwood (Valley Heights) 19.1   25.5 1st 9.3   5.0 19th 32.4 72.9 average 44%
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 21.3 +1.9 26.4 4th 11.9 +0.4 9.2 15th 110.2 120.5 average 91%
Sydney Airport AMO 21.1 +1.1 25.1 4th 11.6 +0.7 8.4 19th 63.8 99.7 average 64%
Terrey Hills AWS 19.3   24.9 1st 10.3   5.9 26th 76.6

Daily rainfall
Hunter (61)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Webbs Ck-Wisemans Ferry (Hawkesbury Rive - - - - - - 1.6 - - - - - - 0.6 0.2 - - - - - - 0.2 8.4 45.0 8.0 - - 3.2 - 0.2 -
Central Tablelands (South) (63)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Springwood (Valley Heights) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.2 - - - - - - - - 15.0 11.6 1.6 - - 0.6 2.2 0.2 -
Metropolitan (East) (66)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Abbotsford (Blackwall Point Rd)





















24.0 21.0 10.5

23.1


Auburn (Rosnay Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 20.0 9.0 6.0 1.0 - 4.0 1.0 - -
Audley (Royal National Park) - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - - 34.0 34.0 21.0 - 1.0 11.0 1.0 - -
Avalon (Wollstonecraft Ave) - - - - - - 4.0 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 27.0 27.0 6.0 - 2.0 6.0 4.0 - 2.0
Avalon Beach (Avalon (Palmgrove Rd)) - - - - - - 8.4 - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - 23.8 33.0 7.2 - - - 4.0 - -
Bankstown Airport AWS
- - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - 0.6 - - - - - - - - 23.6 12.6 5.0 0.2 - 2.0 0.4 - -
Belrose (Evelyn Place) - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - 0.2 - - - - - - - - 24.4 31.4 14.4 - 1.6 16.0 0.4 - -
Campbelltown (Ingleburn (Long Point)) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - - - - - - - 24.0 29.0 2.0 - - 4.0 2.0 - -
Canterbury Racecourse AWS - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - 0.2 - 0.4 - - - - - - - - 24.8 11.2 8.0 0.2 - 2.0 1.2 - -
Castle Cove (Rosebridge Ave)





















25.0 31.0 18.0
2.0 20.0


Chatswood Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - 25.0 30.0 16.0 - 2.0 23.0 1.0 - 2.0
Collaroy (Long Reef Golf Club)





2.2














25.0 22.8 3.2
2.4 4.8 4.6

Concord Golf Club






11.4













25.4 13.6






Cronulla South Bowling Club












0.2






1.0 59.0 16.2 13.4
- 7.0 0.2

Frenchs Forest (Frenchs Forest Rd) - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - 24.0 29.0 12.0 - 1.0 13.0 1.0 - 1.0
Guildford (Woodville Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 20.0 14.0 4.0 - - 5.0 - - -
Holsworthy Aerodrome AWS - - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - 0.4 - - - - - - - - 23.6 27.0 4.0 0.2 - 3.8 2.0 0.2 -
Holsworthy Control Range - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - 0.2 0.2 0.2 - - - - - - - 20.8 25.0 4.0 0.2 - 3.2 0.4 - 0.2
Lidcombe (Carnarvon Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - 22.0 11.0 7.0 1.0 - 3.0 2.0 - 1.0
Liverpool-Scrivener St (Georges River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 16.0 17.0 2.0 - - 3.0 - 1.0 -
Lucas Heights (ANSTO)






4.4













25.2 34.6 7.2

6.8 0.4

Marrickville Golf Club





























2.0
Milperra Bridge (Georges River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 20.0 15.0 3.0 - - 1.0 - - -
Mona Vale Golf Club 0.2 - - - - 0.2 1.4 2.2 0.4 0.4 - 0.2 0.4 0.2 - - - - - - - - 21.8 36.2 5.8 0.2 4.4 4.4 1.8 0.4 0.6
Parramatta (Erts) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 15.0 5.5 2.5 - - 7.5 - - -
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) - - - - - - - - - - - 0.4 - 0.6 - - - - - - - - 18.6 15.0 2.0 - - 6.6 0.8 - -
Peakhurst Golf Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 28.0 27.0 7.0 - - 2.0 1.0 - -
Randwick Bowling Club - 0.1 0.4 - - - - 4.4 - - - - 0.6 0.4 - - - - - - - - 32.0 15.8 11.4 - 3.0 12.8 1.0 - -
Riverview Observatory - - - - - - - - 0.2 0.2 »» 0.4 0.2 0.4 - - - - - - - - 23.8 40.0 12.2 0.4 0.4 9.4 0.6 0.2 0.2
Rose Bay (Royal Sydney Golf Club)

0.8



1.0

0.2 0.4
0.2







33.8 23.4 6.8 0.2 4.4 4.8 1.6

Sans Souci (Public School) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 39.0 26.0 9.0 - - 3.0 - - -
St Ives (Richmond Avenue)






2.0



0.2 0.4







22.8 34.6 16.0
1.8 16.4 0.2
-
Strathfield Golf Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - - - - - - - 27.0 12.0 4.0 - - 4.0 3.0 - -
Sydney (Observatory Hill) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - - 27.2 30.6 20.0 - 3.4 28.6 0.2 - -
Sydney Airport AMO - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - 39.6 8.8 8.8 - 0.2 6.0 0.2 - -
Sydney Botanic Gardens - 0.2 - - - - - 0.4 - - - - - 0.2 0.1 - - - - - - - 26.8 31.2 18.6 0.1 3.8 28.8 0.8

Terrey Hills AWS - - - - - - 1.2 0.2 1.4 - 0.2 - - 0.4 0.2 - - - - - - - 24.4 25.4 8.8 0.8 - 13.6 - - -
Turramurra (Kissing Point Road)












0.2 0.4






26.0 70.4 10.0
0.8 15.6 0.6
-
Metropolitan (West) (67)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Abbotsbury (Fairfield City Farm) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 18.0 18.0 2.0 - - 4.0 1.0 - -
Badgerys Creek AWS - - - - - - - - 0.2 - - 0.2 - 1.8 - - - - - - - - 18.2 24.8 0.8 - 0.2 5.0 0.8 0.2 0.2
Baulkham Hills (Swimming Pool ) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 17.0 14.5 1.5 0.5 - 6.0 0.5 - -
Baulkham Hills Eucalyptus Ct - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 17.0 13.0 1.5 - - 7.5 - 0.5 -
Berowra (Goodwyn Road) - - - - - - 0.8 - - - - 1.8 - - - - - - - - - - 22.0 55.0 - »» 12.2 12.8 - - -
Blacktown (Dog Pound) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 14.5 7.0 3.5 - - 8.5 0.5 - -
Box Hill (Hynds Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 16.0 15.0 1.0 - - 7.0 1.0 - -
Castle Hill (Kathleen Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.2 - - - - - - - - 17.4 18.2 2.2 - - - - - -
Glenorie (Old Northern Rd)





















18.0 50.0 3.4
1.0
10.0

Greystanes (Cumberland Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - 16.0 7.0 2.0 - - 7.5 - - -
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 0.2 - - - - - - - 18.0 16.0 1.4 - - 5.0 0.6 0.2 0.2
Kelso Ck (Kelso Creek U/S Levee (Georges - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 0.5 - - - - - - - 22.0 21.5 4.5 0.5 - 2.0 1.0 - -
Kings Langley (NSW Soccer Federation) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 18.0 13.5 1.5 - - 7.0 0.5 0.5 -
Lower Portland (Hawkesbury River)






















- - - - -


Merrylands West (Finlayson Creek) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 17.0 7.5 2.5 - - 6.0 0.5 - -
North Parramatta (Burnside Homes) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 17.5 15.0 1.0 0.5 - 6.0 0.5 - -
North Rocks (Muirfield Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 17.5 18.0 2.5 - - 7.0 - - -
Northmead Bowling Club - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 16.5 12.0 1.5 0.5 0.5 7.0 0.5 - -
Penrith Lakes AWS - - - - - - - - - 0.4 - - 0.4 0.6 - 0.2 - - - - - - 15.6 6.0 1.6 - 0.2 1.4 0.4 0.2 0.2
Prospect Reservoir - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.2 - - - - - - - - 16.8 10.6 3.2 - - 7.8 0.4 0.1 -
Richmond RAAF - - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - 1.6 - - - - - - - - 14.2 9.6 1.6 0.2 - 1.0 0.6 0.6 -
Sackville - - - - - - 0.2 - 0.2 0.2 0.2 - 0.2 0.6 - 0.2 - - - - - 0.2 13.4 24.0 1.8 0.2 0.2 2.8 - 0.2 0.2
Seven Hills (Radio FM 103.2) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 15.5 7.0 1.5 - - 8.5 0.5 - -
Seven Hills (Collins St)





















30.0 15.4 5.0

8.4


South Creek (Elizabeth Drive)












0.5







8.5 9.0 2.5

2.5 0.5

St Clair (Juba Close) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 1.0 - - - - - - - 18.0 10.0 3.0 - - 4.0 1.0 - -
Toongabbie Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - 0.5 - - - - - 15.0 7.5 2.5 - - 7.0 0.5 - -
Toongabbie Ck (Redbank Road (Toongabbee - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 17.0 10.0 3.0 - - 6.5 - - -
West Pennant Hills (Cumberland S F Alert - - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 19.5 24.5 4.0 - - 9.0 - - 0.5
Willmot (Resolution Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 17.0 5.0 1.0 - - 6.0 - - -
Windsor SWC (Hawkesbury River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 14.0 11.0 - 1.0 - 1.0 - 1.0 -
Illawarra (68)12345678910111213141516171819202122232425262728293031
Camden Airport AWS - - - - - - - - - - - 0.2 - 1.6 - - - - - - - - 20.0 40.0 - - - 3.2 0.4 0.2 -
Campbelltown (Kentlyn (Georges River Roa 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 19.0 45.0 3.0 1.0 - 2.0 1.0 - -
Campbelltown (Mount Annan) 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.2 - - - - - - - - 17.4 46.0 0.8 - - 2.4 0.6 - 0.2
Rossmore (South Creek) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - 19.0 25.0 3.0 - - 2.0 1.0 - 1.0

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.


Notes

A Monthly Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in Sydney - Greater Sydney 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 Monday 3 June 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 20 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