Sydney in September 2013: Warmest September on record

  • Maximum temperatures break previous September record by 1 °C
  • Records broken for warm days, cool nights, warm spells
  • Below average rainfall; wettest day since June.
  • Early start to bushfire season

Rainfall - Below average rainfall, one rain event

Sydney Observatory Hill recorded 35.8 mm of rain during September, half the historical average of 68.6 mm. The rain fell over only four rain days (average 11 days), the fewest since 2009, all of which fell during the middle of the month.

The only day with more than 5 mm of rain was on the 17th, when a complex low pressure trough with embedded lows produced heavy rain across the coast. Daily totals reached 32.2 mm at Observatory Hill, the heaviest rain day since June. Falls were locally heavier in the eastern suburbs, some of which consequently recorded above average rainfall for the month. The heaviest total was 88.2 mm at Randwick Bowling Club, its wettest September day on record.

Temperature - Warmest September on record

September was the warmest on record for Sydney, with a substantial number of records broken at Observatory Hill. Mean temperatures broke records at all six major temperature stations in the city, a consequence of widespread maximum temperatures more than 3 °C above normal and minimum temperatures more than 1 °C above normal, and persistent warm weather during the month.

The average maximum temperature at Observatory Hill was 24.4 °C, 4.4 °C above the historical average for September and 1.1 °C above the previous September record (23.3 °C in 1980), with temperatures more typical of November weather (average 23.6 °C).

Daytime temperatures were persistently warm during the month, with only three days dropping below 20 °C associated with a mid-month rain event, an equal record with September 2012 (average 17 cool days). This included 20 consecutive days above 20 °C between August 24 and September 12, the longest such spell on record for September and two weeks earlier than the previous record (19 days 7-25 September 2001).

There were also several very warm days during the month. Seven days reached at least 28 °C during the month, well above the historical average of 1 warm day and the most on record (previous record 6 days in 1928). Three of these days reached 30 °C, the equal-highest on record (4 other times), two of which occurred during the first ten days of the month.

The average minimum temperature was also the highest on record for Sydney Observatory Hill at 13.8 °C, 2.7 °C above the historical average. No nights dropped below 10 °C during the month for the first time on record (average 11 nights), while 10 nights exceeded 15 °C (average 2-3 nights), the equal highest on record with September 2009. The warmest night was 20.1 °C on the 10th, the earliest 20 °C night on record for Sydney.

The warmest days also featured unusually warm mornings. The 9am temperature was 25.9 °C on the 10th, the equal-warmest on record for September and the earliest such warm morning by two weeks (previous earliest was 24 September 2009). This record was later broken when temperatures reached 26.9 °C at 9am on September 26, before reaching 29.9 °C at 10 am.

See a list of September temperature records.

Other phenomena - Early season bushfires

Sydney Airport recorded an average of 8.8 hours of bright sunshine, above the historical average of 7.9 hours but not as sunny as September 2012 (9.2 hours).

The prevailing wind direction was northerly, with 33% of 3 pm winds N-W and 53% N-E, well above average for September; only 13% of 3 pm winds were southerly, half the historical average. The northwesterly winds brought warm inland air to Sydney, contributing to the record-breaking temperatures for the month.

There were eight days with strong winds observed, reaching 87 km/h at the airport and 96 km/h at Kurnell on the 26th, with gusts of 91 km/h at Port Botany on the 12th. The strong winds on the 26th caused some fallen trees and roof damage, mostly in western Sydney.

The combination of dry weather, warm temperatures and strong winds resulted in significant early-season bushfire activity during the month. Major bushfires impacted western Sydney and the Blue Mountains on the 10th, resulting in some evacuations, closed roads, and two destroyed houses. Bushfires also burnt large areas of Barrenjoey Head in the Northern Beaches on the 28th.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries

Extremes in September 2013
Hottest day 33.6 °C at Sydney Airport AMO on the 10th
Warmest days on average 26.3 °C at Penrith Lakes AWS
Coolest days on average 23.2 °C at Terrey Hills AWS
Coldest day 16.1 °C at Terrey Hills AWS on the 13th
16.1 °C at Terrey Hills AWS on the 16th
Coldest night 3.3 °C at Camden Airport AWS on the 28th
Coolest nights on average 7.9 °C at Camden Airport AWS
Warmest nights on average 13.8 °C at Sydney (Observatory Hill)
13.8 °C at Sydney Airport AMO
Warmest night 20.1 °C at Sydney (Observatory Hill) on the 10th
Warmest on average overall 19.5 °C at Sydney Airport AMO
Coolest on average overall 16.6 °C at Camden Airport AWS
Wettest overall 98.4 mm at Randwick Bowling Club
Wettest day 88.2 mm at Randwick Bowling Club on the 17th
Highest wind gust 96 km/h at Kurnell AWS on the 26th

Record highest September daily rainfall
Highest daily rainfall
in September 2013 (mm)
Previous wettest
for September
Years of
record
Randwick Bowling Club 88.2 on the 17th 80.0 on the 20th in 1982 106


Record highest September mean daily maximum temperature
Mean daily maximum
temperature
for September 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for September
Years of
record
Average for
September
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 24.4 23.3 in 1980 154 20.0
Riverview Observatory 24.1 23.7 in 2009 75 20.7
Sydney Airport AMO 25.2 24.0 in 1980 74 20.5
Prospect Reservoir 25.6 24.9 in 1980 47 21.3
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 25.2 = 25.2 in 1980 46 21.6
Bankstown Airport AWS 25.4 24.8 in 1980 45 21.6
Richmond RAAF 26.2 24.4 in 2002 20 23.1



Record highest September mean daily minimum temperature
Mean daily minimum
temperature
for September 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for September
Years of
record
Average for
September
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 13.8 13.5 in 2009 154 11.1
Sydney Airport AMO 13.8 13.2 in 2006 74 10.4
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 11.2 10.7 in 2009 45 9.3


Record highest September mean temperature
Mean daily
temperature
for September 2013 (°C)
Previous warmest
for September
Years of
record
Average for
September
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 19.1 18.3 in 2009 154 15.5
Sydney Airport AMO 19.5 18.3 in 2009 74 15.5
Prospect Reservoir 17.9 17.5 in 1980 47 15.3
Bankstown Airport AWS 17.8 16.7 in 2006 45 15.1
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 18.2 17.3 in 1980 45 15.5
Camden Airport AWS 16.6 15.9 in 2006 36 14.3


Summary statistics for September 2013
Maximum temperatures
for September
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
for September
(°C)
Rainfall
for September
(millimetres)
Mean for
September
2013
Diff
from
average
Highest for
September
2013
Mean for
September
2013
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
September
2013
Total for
September
2013
Average
for
September
Rank of
September
2013
Fraction of
September
average
Badgerys Creek AWS 25.3   32.3 25th 8.7   4.1 12th 28.8
Bankstown Airport AWS 25.4 +3.8 32.7 25th 10.2 +1.5 6.5 28th 33.2 44.3 average 75%
Camden Airport AWS 25.3 +3.4 31.9 25th 7.9 +1.2 3.3 28th 34.4 39.5 average 87%
Campbelltown (Mount Annan) 25.0   31.6 25th 8.3   3.8 28th 33.6
Canterbury Racecourse AWS 24.5   31.7 25th 10.5   6.1 12th 46.8
Holsworthy Aerodrome AWS 25.1   32.1 25th 9.9   5.1 28th 33.4
Holsworthy Control Range 24.9   32.2 25th 9.2   4.4 28th 29.6
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS 25.2   32.1 25th 10.1   5.6 28th 22.0
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) 25.2 +3.6 33.0 25th 11.2 +1.9 6.5 27th 17.4 53.1 low 33%
Penrith Lakes AWS 26.3   33.0 25th 10.2   5.7 27th 19.0
Prospect Reservoir 25.6 +4.3 33.0 25th 10.5 +1.1 6.7 21st 20.9 46.7 low 45%
Richmond RAAF 26.2 +3.1 33.0 25th 8.6   3.7 27th 24.0 48.4 average 50%
Riverview Observatory 24.1 +3.4 31.7 26th 11.4 +2.0 7.8 1st 35.4 61.7 average 57%
Springwood (Valley Heights) 24.3   31.0 25th 10.9   6.7 13th 26.0 55.4 average 47%
Sydney (Observatory Hill) 24.4 +4.4 31.8 26th 13.8 +2.7 10.0 13th 35.8 68.4 average 52%
Sydney Airport AMO 25.2 +4.7 33.6 10th 13.8 +3.4 9.4 13th 69.8 60.4 high 116%
Terrey Hills AWS 23.2   30.9 26th 12.1   7.9 13th 51.6

Daily rainfall
Hunter (61)123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930
Webbs Ck-Wisemans Ferry (Hawkesbury Rive - - - - - - - - - - - - - 22.0 - - 14.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Central Tablelands (South) (63)123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930
North Richmond (Hospital) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - 22.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Springwood (Valley Heights) - - - - - - - 0.4 - - - - - 3.2 - 0.2 22.2 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Metropolitan (East) (66)123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930
Abbotsford (Blackwall Point Rd)












3.0

34.0












Auburn (Rosnay Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5.0 - - 19.0 - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - -
Audley (Royal National Park) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 8.0 - - 86.0 - - - - - - - - -



Avalon (Wollstonecraft Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.0 - - 46.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Avalon Beach (Avalon (Palmgrove Rd)) - - - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - 4.6 - - 44.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Bankstown Airport AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - 8.0 - 0.6 24.6 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Belrose (Evelyn Place) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.4 - 0.6 51.8 0.2 - - 2.8 - - - - - - - - -
Campbelltown (Ingleburn (Long Point)) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 9.0 - - 25.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Canterbury Racecourse AWS - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - 6.2 - 0.6 39.8 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Castle Cove (Rosebridge Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 7.0 - - 53.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Chatswood Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 - - 41.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Collaroy (Long Reef Golf Club)











2.2 3.0 1.0
41.6 0.4











Concord Golf Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.2 - - 30.6












Cronulla South Bowling Club







1.3



8.8

50.0












Frenchs Forest (Frenchs Forest Rd) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.0 - 1.0 52.0 - - - 2.0 - - - - - - - - -
Granville Shell Refinery - - - - - - - - - - - - - - »» 2.5 19.0 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Guildford (Woodville Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5.0 - 1.0 17.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Holsworthy Aerodrome AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - 7.0 0.2 - 26.0 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Holsworthy Control Range - - - - - - - - - - - - - 6.2 - 0.2 23.2 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Ingleburn (Sackville Street) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 8.0 1.2 - 19.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Lidcombe (Carnarvon Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 14.0 - - - - - - - - - - 4.0 - -
Liverpool-Scrivener St (Georges River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.0 - - 17.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Lucas Heights (ANSTO)












9.0

41.4












Marrickville Golf Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - 7.0 1.0 1.0 38.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Milperra Bridge (Georges River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 6.0 - - 21.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Mona Vale Golf Club 0.2 0.2 0.4 0.4 0.2 - 0.2 0.2 0.2 - - - - 6.8 - 0.4 51.4 0.6 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Oatley (Woronora Parade)












7.0
1.0












-
Oyster Bay (Green Point Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 6.8 - 0.4 47.0 0.6 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Palm Beach (Sunrise Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 »» 1.2 28.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Parramatta (Erts) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - 13.5 1.5 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Parramatta North (Masons Drive) - - - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - 2.0 - - 13.8 0.6 - - 0.6 - 0.2 - - - - - - -
Peakhurst Golf Club - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5.0 - 1.0 37.0 - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - -
Pennant Hills (Yarrara Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.2 - 0.2 18.0 0.4 - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - -
Randwick Bowling Club - - - - - - - - 0.4 - - - - 6.6 1.2 1.8 88.2 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Riverview Observatory - 0.2 - 0.2 - - - - - - - - - 1.8 - 0.6 32.6 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Rookwood (Hawthorne Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - »» »» 6.2 27.2 0.8 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Rose Bay (Royal Sydney Golf Club)







0.6


0.2 3.0 0.2 2.8 73.4












Sans Souci (Public School) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 1.0 - 50.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
St Ives (Richmond Avenue)












3.0
1.2 18.4












Strathfield Golf Club - - - 1.0 - - - - - 1.0 - - 1.0 5.0 - 1.0 31.0 - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - -
Sydney (Observatory Hill) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.2 - 1.2 32.2 - 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - -
Sydney Airport AMO - - - - - - - - - - - - - 6.2 0.8 0.2 62.2 0.4 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Sydney Botanic Gardens - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 2.0 - 51.0 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Terrey Hills AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.0 - 3.4 44.0 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Turramurra (Kissing Point Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.4 - 0.4 21.8 0.2 - - 0.2 - - - - - - - - -
Metropolitan (West) (67)123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930
Abbotsbury (Fairfield City Farm) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5.0 - - 17.0 1.0 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Badgerys Creek AWS - -
0.2 - - - - - - - - - 4.4 0.2 - 24.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Baulkham Hills (Swimming Pool ) - - - - - - - - 0.5 - - - - 2.5 - - 13.5 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Baulkham Hills Eucalyptus Ct - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - 13.5 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Berowra (Goodwyn Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5.0 - - 20.8 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Blacktown (Dog Pound) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.5 - - 13.5 - - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5
Box Hill (Hynds Road) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 - - 14.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Canoelands (Canoelands) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 - - 15.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Castle Hill (Kathleen Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.6 0.5 - 13.0 - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - - -
Glenorie (Old Northern Rd) - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.0 - - 12.2 - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Greystanes (Bathurst Street) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.4 - - 14.0 - - - 0.4 - - - - - - - - -
Greystanes (Cumberland Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.5 - - 13.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Gunderman (Wisemans Ferry Rd) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.2 - - 11.4 - - - 1.4 - 0.8 - - - - - - -
Horsley Park Equestrian Centre AWS - -
- 0.2 - - - - - - - - 5.8 - - 15.8 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Kelso Ck (Kelso Creek U/S Levee (Georges - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.5 - 0.5 24.5 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Kings Langley (NSW Soccer Federation) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - 12.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Maroota (Tobruk) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.4 0.2 - 17.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Merrylands West (Finlayson Creek) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 4.5 - - 15.5 - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.5
North Parramatta (Burnside Homes) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.5 - 0.5 13.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
North Rocks (Muirfield Golf Club) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - 12.5 - - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - -
Northmead Bowling Club - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5 - 1.5 - - 11.5 1.0 - - 0.5 - - - - 11.5 - - - -
Penrith Lakes AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.0 - - 16.8 0.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Prospect Reservoir - - - - - - - - - - - - - 3.8 - - 15.9 0.4 - - 0.8 - - - - - - - - -
Richmond - UWS Hawkesbury - - - - - - - - - - - - -















Richmond RAAF - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.6 0.2 - 20.0 1.2 - - - - - - - - - - -
Sackville - - 0.2 - 0.2 - - - - - - - - 1.2 - - 16.8 0.2 - - - - - 0.2 - - - - - -
Schofields Boundary Rd - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.2 - - 14.4 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Seven Hills (Radio FM 103.2) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.5 - - 13.0 0.5 - - - - - - - - - - - 0.5
Seven Hills (Collins St)












2.0

13.4












South Creek (Elizabeth Drive)












2.0

7.5












Toongabbie Bowling Club - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 1.5 - - 1.5 - - 11.0 0.5 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Toongabbie Ck (Redbank Road (Toongabbee - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.5 - - 14.0 1.0 - - 0.5 - - - - - - - - 0.5
West Pennant Hills (Cumberland S F Alert - - - - - - - - - - - - - 2.5 - - 13.5 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Willmot (Resolution Ave) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - 14.0 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Windsor SWC (Hawkesbury River) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 1.0 - - 17.0 2.0 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Illawarra (68)123456789101112131415161718192021222324252627282930
Camden Airport AWS - - - - - - - - - - - - - 12.0 - - 22.4 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Campbelltown (Kentlyn (Georges River Roa - - - - - - - - - - - - - 11.0 - 1.0 31.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Campbelltown (Mount Annan) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 11.8 - - 21.8 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Mount Annan Botanic Garden - - - 1.0 - - - - - - - - - 11.0 - - 20.0 1.2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
Rossmore (South Creek) - - - - - - - - - - - - - 5.0 - - 15.0 - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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 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 9 am on Monday 14 October 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.

The ACORN-SAT dataset is being used for temperature area averages from December 2012 onwards. The major change from earlier datasets is that the ACORN-SAT dataset commences in 1910, rather than 1950, and hence rankings are calculated using a larger set of years.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries