Friday, 31 October 2008 - Monthly Climate Summary for Northern Territory - Product code IDCKGC22R0

Northern Territory in October 2008 - Hot

Summary

October was a hot month in the Territory, with maximum temperatures being on average 1.75°C above the long-term mean. Darwin recorded its equal-hottest month on record. Long-term rainfall deficiencies were perpetuated in southern parts of the Territory, while in the north, Darwin had its wettest October in a decade. One of the thunderstorms that produced that rain also gave Darwin its strongest recorded October wind gust of 102km/h, in the late afternoon of October 15.

Rainfall

Darwin Airport recorded 117 mm during October, which was its wettest October since 1998. The rainfall was not widespread though, with most inland parts of the Top End recording near-average totals for October.

In southern parts of the Territory, below average rainfall this month has perpetuated long-running rainfall deficiencies. In the 19-month period from April 2007 to October 2008, the Alice Springs Airport recording site has recorded a cumulative total of just 118.2 mm. This is its lowest 19-month cumulative rainfall total on record. Several other sites in the region, as far north as Tennant Creek, have also recorded their lowest-on-record 19-month cumulative total, as shown in the record table below.

The wettest overall was 137.6 mm at Nightcliff Pool, followed by 126.8 mm at Wildman Rangers, followed by 117.0 mm at Darwin Airport.

The wettest single day 74.8 mm at Pinelands on the 15th, followed by 66.6 mm at Howard Springs on the 15th, followed by 65.2 mm at Majestic Orchids on the 15th.

Maximum temperature

Darwin recorded its equal hottest month on record, with an average maximum temperature of 34.4°C. It has recorded a similar average maximum on three previous occasions, being December 2002, November 1976 and October 1973. There were six days when the temperature at Darwin exceeded 36°C, which is three more days than any other month recorded. The hottest day was Wednesday 22 October when the temperature reached 37.5°C, which was Darwin’s 4th hottest day on record.

Most other places in the Territory also recorded a hotter than average October, with the southwest corner being more than 2 degrees above average.

The hottest day was 42.2°C at Jervois on the 30th, followed by 41.9°C at Rabbit Flat on the 27th, followed by 41.8°C at Elliott on the 13th.

The warmest days on average were 39.9°C at Bradshaw AWS, followed by 39.7°C at Douglas River, followed by 39.6°C at Kidman Springs, followed by 39.6°C at Timber Creek.

The coolest days on average were 32.0°C at Gove Airport, followed by 32.2°C at Kulgera.

The coldest day was 19.6°C at Rabbit Flat on the 7th, followed by 21.5°C at Arltunga on the 7th, followed by 22.4°C at Territory Grape Farm AWS on the 7th.

Some sites had their highest October temperature on record.

Some sites had their highest October mean daily maximum temperature on record.

Minimum temperature

Minimum temperatures mostly near normal in northern parts of the Territory, and much warmer than normal in southern parts.

The coldest night was 4.7°C at Kulgera on the 26th, followed by 5.6°C at Kulgera on the 6th, followed by 6.9°C at Arltunga on the 13th.

The coolest nights on average were 15.6°C at Kulgera, followed by 16.8°C at Alice Springs Airport, followed by 16.8°C at Arltunga, followed by 17.2°C at Curtin Springs, followed by 17.2°C at Territory Grape Farm AWS.

The warmest nights on average were 26.8°C at Warruwi AWS.

The warmest nights were 29.6°C at Kidman Springs on the 12th and Alice Springs Airport on the 30th, followed by 28.9°C at Kidman Springs on the 19th.

Some sites had their highest October mean daily minimum temperature on record.


Extremes

Hottest day
Highest temperature
42.2°C at Jervois on the 30th
Warmest days on average
Highest mean daily maximum temperature
39.9°C at Bradshaw AWS
Coolest days on average
Lowest mean daily maximum temperature
32.0°C at Gove Airport
Coldest day
Lowest daily maximum temperature
19.6°C at Rabbit Flat on the 7th
Coldest night
Lowest temperature
4.7°C at Kulgera on the 26th
Coolest nights on average
Lowest mean daily minimum temperature
15.6°C at Kulgera
Warmest nights on average
Highest mean daily minimum temperature
26.8°C at Warruwi
Warmest night
Highest daily minimum temperature
29.6°C at Kidman Springs on the 12th and Alice Springs Airport on the 30th
Wettest overall
Highest total rainfall
137.6 mm at Nightcliff Pool
Wettest day
Highest daily rainfall
74.8 mm at Pinelands on the 15th
Highest wind gust
102 km/h at Darwin Airport on the 15th

Records

Record highest daily October rainfall
Total rainfall (mm) Previous highest Years of
record
Leanyer 63.4 on the 15th 56.2 on the 20th in 1996 18
Stokes Hill 53.8 on the 15th 43.2 on the 21st in 1983 14


Record driest 19 months

Total rainfall from
April 2007 to October 2008 (mm)

Previous lowest Years of
record
Tennant Creek Airport 203.4 218.0 in 1991 39
Yuendumu 148.9 193.1 in 1964 55
Alice Springs Airport 118.2 149.4 in 1964 66
Jervois 124.6 132.8 in 2002 41
Kulgera 95.2 185.8 in 2006 36
Papunya 119.8 137.7 in 1962 36
Wallace Rock Hole 130.2 205.1 in 1991 22
Territory Grape Farm AWS 183.0 273.8 in 1994 14



Record highest October temperature
Highest temperature (°C) Previous highest Years of
record
Pirlangimpi 37.7 on the 22nd = 37.7 on the 18th in 1982 23
Black Point 36.1 on the 22nd 35.5 on the 15th in 2007 16
Dum In Mirrie AWS 37.7 on the 23rd 35.8 on the 14th in 2007 10



Record highest October mean daily maximum temperature
Mean daily maximum
temperature (°C)
Previous highest Years of
record
Darwin Airport 34.4 = 34.4 in 1973 66
Pirlangimpi 34.9 34.2 in 2002 23
Douglas River 39.7 39.6 in 2002 17
Dum In Mirrie AWS 33.5 33.4 in 2005 10



Record highest October mean daily minimum temperature
Mean daily minimum
temperature (°C)
Previous highest Years of
record
Warruwi 26.8 26.7 in 1998 38



Summaries

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

Summary statistics for October 2008
Maximum temperatures (°C) Minimum temperatures (°C) Rainfall (millimetres)
Mean Diff
from
normal
Highest Mean Diff
from
normal
Lowest Total Rank Fraction of
October
normal
Darwin-Daly (district 14GA)
Batchelor Aero AWS 37.8 +0.9 39.5 14th 23.6 +0.7 21.1 17th 39.6 average 62%
Black Point 33.6 +1.0 36.1 22nd 25.5 +1.0 22.8 1st 13.0 average 104%
Bradshaw AWS 39.9 +1.3 41.3 26th 25.3 +0.4 21.8 8th 5.6 low 23%
Cape Don AWS 32.4   34.0 21st 25.8   22.7 17th 41.4 high 234%
Channel Point 32.7 +0.5 37.6 23rd 24.5 +0.4 21.5 17th 66.8 average 109%
Darwin Airport 34.4 +1.3 37.5 22nd 25.1 +0.1 20.6 16th 117.0 high 183%
Delamere Weapons Range AWS 38.3 +1.0 40.1 30th 24.2 +0.3 20.8 1st 15.6 low 39%
Douglas River 39.7 +2.3 41.4 22nd 22.9 +0.6 18.7 10th 0 lowest 0%
Dum In Mirrie AWS 33.5 +1.0 37.7 23rd 25.2 −0.5 22.6 17th 60.2 average 87%
Jabiru Airport AWS 38.2 +0.6 40.1 13th 24.4 +0.6 22.5 15th 16.6 average 45%
Katherine Aviation Museum 38.4 +0.7 40.0 30th 22.7 −1.1 17.9 10th 4.4 low 13%
Mango Farm 38.6 +1.2 40.5 13th 22.6 +0.3 20.0 10th 73.4 very high 183%
McCluer Island AWS 30.7   32.3 15th 27.1 +1.2 24.3 1st 0 lowest 0%
Middle Point AWS 37.8   40.5 11th 22.4   20.0 1st 51.0
Oenpelli 37.4 0.0 39.3 13th 22.6 +0.1 20.0 3rd 45.8 high 179%
Pine Creek Council 37.6   39.3 12th 24.2   21.7 17th 56.7
Pirlangimpi AWS 34.9 +1.7 37.7 22nd 23.8 +0.9 21.7 1st 44.6 average 57%
Point Fawcett AWS 33.5 +0.7 35.8 22nd 23.0 −1.1 19.6 2nd 74.4 average 142%
Port Keats Aero 35.6   40.2 10th 24.3   20.0 10th 7.4
Tindal RAAF AWS 38.8 +1.3 40.2 6th 23.6 −0.6 19.3 24th 3.6 average 10%
Arnhem (district 14BC)
Alyangula Police 32.6 −0.2 35.3 10th 23.4 +0.1 20.7 22nd 19.3 average 74%
Gove Airport 32.0 +0.3 33.1 13th 22.4 +0.9 19.7 27th 6.8 high 108%
Groote Eylandt Airport AWS 35.1   36.9 23rd 21.2 +0.2 18.3 22nd 23.6
Maningrida Aero AWS 33.4   34.7 23rd 23.2   21.0 24th 3.0
Milingimbi AWS 33.3   34.8 13th 24.0   21.7 17th 20.8
Ngayawili AWS 33.8   35.8 23rd 23.0 +0.5 21.3 29th 0.8
Warruwi AWS 33.0 +0.5 34.4 15th 26.8 +1.6 23.2 1st 0.2 average 2%
Roper-Mcarthur (district 14DE)
Borroloola AWS 37.5 +0.9 39.3 30th 21.1 −0.6 18.2 1st 8.0 high 54%
Bulman AWS 38.7   40.4 13th 20.8   17.5 12th 0.8
Centre Island AWS 33.5 +0.6 35.7 16th 25.4 +0.5 23.6 1st 1.0 average 11%
Daly Waters AWS 39.1 +1.9 41.1 6th 20.4 −0.9 15.6 1st 18.6 average 85%
Larrimah 38.3 +1.0 40.2 30th 21.8 −0.6 17.5 12th 5.6 average 21%
McArthur River Mine 38.8 +1.0 41.1 30th 22.2 +1.2 19.3 12th 17.6 average 94%
Ngukurr 38.0 +0.4 39.9 30th 23.9 +1.4 22.0 1st 0 lowest 0%
Wollogorang 36.9 +0.2 39.4 13th 20.5 +0.7 16.5 1st 44.7 high 200%
Victoria (district 14F)
Kidman Springs 39.6 +1.0 41.0 30th 24.7 +1.0 18.6 25th 0.7 low 3%
Lajamanu AWS 38.3 +1.1 41.3 27th 20.9 +0.3 14.7 25th 4.0 average 18%
Timber Creek 39.6 +1.4 41.3 6th 23.6 −0.5 15.9 13th 3.8 low 18%
Victoria River Downs 39.5 +1.7 41.4 26th 22.0 −0.4 15.3 12th 0.6 low 3%
Wave Hill 38.5 +0.9 40.7 26th 21.5 −0.1 16.4 25th 19.0 average 63%
Barkly (district 15A)
Elliott 39.4 +1.3 41.8 13th 20.8 −0.1 15.3 13th 9.0 average 37%
Tennant Creek Airport 36.3 +1.6 40.5 30th 23.2 +1.5 17.5 8th 0 lowest 0%
Alice Springs (district 15B)
Alice Springs Airport 33.1 +2.2 39.9 29th 16.8 +2.0 9.5 17th 1.6 low 6%
Arltunga 32.4   38.1 30th 16.8   6.9 13th 2.6 low 12%
Curtin Springs 33.8 +2.1 39.0 29th 17.2 +3.0 11.3 16th 1.0 average 6%
Jervois 35.0 +1.7 42.2 30th 18.4 +2.9 10.0 10th 8.6 average 54%
Kulgera 32.2 +2.0 39.5 3rd 15.6 +0.7 4.7 26th 0 lowest 0%
Papunya 35.8   40.4 30th 18.0   12.5 12th 0.5 low 3%
Rabbit Flat 38.1 +0.8 41.9 27th 18.0 −0.9 9.8 25th 25.0 average 121%
Territory Grape Farm AWS 34.5 +1.3 39.5 30th 17.2 +1.6 11.9 10th 0.6 low 3%
Watarrka 34.0 +1.1 38.0 30th 20.0 +2.8 14.2 8th 0 lowest 0%
Yulara Aero AWS 34.1 +2.0 39.8 28th 17.5 +2.9 11.7 10th 0.2 very low 1%

Notes

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 3 pm on Friday 31 October 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 the years 1800 to 2007. They are not shown for sites with less than 10 years of record in that time, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.
The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of long-term average ("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

NT Climate Services Centre
Bureau of Meteorology
Phone (08) 8920 3813
Email climate.nt@bom.gov.au