Wednesday, 1 January 2014 - Monthly Climate Summary for South Australia - Product code IDCKGC13R0
South Australia in December 2013: Average rainfall and a hot end to 2013
- A heatwave across northern South Australia at months end produces some record hot days
- Near average rainfall across the State
Averaged across South Australia as a whole, rainfall was 16.7mm ( 8.9% below the long term December mean of 18.3 mm) ranking this December as the 70th wettest on record. The lowest December rainfall on record was observed in 1925 with just 0.9mm averaged across the State. December 2012 was drier than 2013, whereas 2011 was wetter than average.
Rainfall was below average across southeastern agricultural districts, while some parts of the pastoral districts saw rainfall tending above average for the month. Overall, rainfall totals were near-average for over 80% of the State. Despite near average rainfall totals for South Australia taken as a whole, there were still some sites with lowest total December rainfall for at least 20 years.
The wettest single day was at Leigh Creek (Maynards Well) with 37.4mm on the 23rd. The wettest overall was at Parndana CFS on Kangaroo Island with 62.6mm recorded for the month.
The area-averaged mean daily temperature was 1.1°C above the long term 1961-90 average of 25.4°C. In comparison, December 2012 was 1.8 °C above average. Mean daily temperatures were above average across most of the State, with western agricultural parts of the State experiencing very much above average temperatures.
The warmest on average was at Oodnadatta with 29.7°C while the coolest on average was Robe Airfield with 16.2 °C.
The first half of the month began with relatively mild to cool conditions for most districts, however, the second half of December saw heatwave conditions across central and northern South Australia that contirbuted to some sites observing their highest December mean temperature for at least 20 years.
The area-averaged maximum temperature was 1.6°C above the long term 1961-90 average of 34.8°C.
Very hot days were experienced in the second half of December, with Oodnadatta reaching 46.5 °C on the 19th, resulting in the hottest day of the month observed at any location in the State while several other sites had their highest December temperature on record. December finished with a large area of the western half of the State observing maximum temperatures in the top 1% of temperatures in the record on the 31st.
The warmest days on average were at Marree Comparison with 38.1°C while the coolest days on average were at Robe Comparison with 20.8°C. The coldest single day for the month was at Mount Lofty with 12 °C on the 5th.
December 2013 saw warm nights for the state, with the minimum temperature averaged across South Australia of 0.7 °C above the long term average of 17.5 °C.
A cool start to the month saw some locations along southern coasts observe below average daily minimum temperatures, including Cape Willoughby which observed its lowest December temperature on record on the 5th.
Warm nights were experienced in the second half of the December, with both Tarcoola Aero and Arkaroola observing 32.6 °C on the 20th and 21st respectively, while other sites had their warmest December night (highest daily minimum temperature) on record.
The warmest nights on average were at Oodnadatta with 21.9 °C while the coolest nights on average were at Keith (Munkora) with 9.1°C. The coldest single day of the month was also observed at Keith (Munkora) with 1.5°C on the 24th.
|Extremes in December 2013|
|Hottest day||46.5 °C at Oodnadatta Airport on the 19th|
|Warmest days on average||38.1 °C at Marree Comparison|
|Coolest days on average||20.8 °C at Robe Comparison|
|Coldest day||12.0 °C at Mount Lofty on the 5th|
|Coldest night||1.5 °C at Keith (Munkora) on the 24th|
|Coolest nights on average||9.1 °C at Keith (Munkora)|
|Warmest nights on average||21.9 °C at Oodnadatta Airport|
|Warmest night|| 32.6 °C at Tarcoola
Aero on the 20th
32.6 °C at Arkaroola on the 21st
|Warmest on average overall||29.7 °C at Oodnadatta Airport|
|Coolest on average overall||16.2 °C at Robe Airfield|
|Wettest overall||62.6 mm at Parndana Cfs AWS|
|Driest overall||0.1 mm at Coober Pedy|
|Wettest day||37.4 mm at Leigh Creek (Maynards Well) on the 23rd|
|Highest wind gust||96 km/h at Coober Pedy Airport on the 1st|
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|Lowest total December rainfall for at least 20 years|
| Total rainfall
for December 2013 (mm)
| Most recent December
at least this dry
|Adelaide (Tea Tree Gully Council)||1.4||0.0||in 1904*||103||31.8|
|Marla Police Station||2.4||0.6||in 1985*||25||38.2|
* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a lower value has gone unreported.
|Record highest December temperature|
| Highest temperature
in December 2013 (°C)
| Previous warmest
|Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre)||43.6||on the 19th||= 43.6||on the 30th in 2005||51||28.2|
|Warooka||41.0||on the 19th||40.5||on the 31st in 2007||49||25.5|
|Meningie||42.3||on the 19th||42.2||on the 31st in 2007||48||24.5|
|Adelaide (Kent Town)||43.4||on the 19th||42.5||on the 30th in 2005||37||27.0|
|Maitland||42.9||on the 19th||42.6||on the 30th in 2005||32||26.3|
|Nullarbor||46.1||on the 27th||46.0||on the 11th in 1998||28||26.7|
|Record highest December daily minimum temperature|
| Highest daily minimum
in December 2013 (°C)
| Previous warmest
|Kimba||28.0||on the 20th||27.2||on the 31st in 2005||47||13.9|
|Leigh Creek Airport||31.6||on the 19th||31.3||on the 30th in 2003||31||18.6|
|Marla Police Station||31.0||on the 3rd||= 31.0||on the 22nd in 1990||28||20.0|
|Record lowest December temperature|
| Lowest temperature
in December 2013 (°C)
| Previous coolest
|Cape Willoughby||7.0||on the 5th||8.5||on the 18th in 1991||47||14.4|
|Highest December mean temperature for at least 20 years|
| Mean daily
for December 2013 (°C)
| Most recent December
at least this warm
|Summary statistics for December 2013|
|Northwest (district 16)|
|Coober Pedy Airport||35.8||45.6||20th||20.4||12.0||5th||14.4||19.4||average||74%|
|Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome)||35.6||44.2||19th||19.2||9.6||6th||7.8|
|Far North (district 17)|
|Leigh Creek Airport||34.9||+1.9||43.3||28th||19.6||+1.0||10.6||6th||23.2||24.1||average||96%|
|Western Agricultural (district 18)|
|North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS)||25.3||+0.9||35.9||19th||13.4||-0.6||8.1||5th||23.8||18.7||average||127%|
|Port Augusta Aero||32.7||45.6||20th||17.1||10.2||5th||12.0|
|Upper North (district 19)|
|Northeast (district 20)|
|Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot)||32.2||44.4||19th||13.7||8.3||12th||17.0|
|Lower North (district 21)|
|Clare High School||28.1||40.8||19th||12.9||5.7||5th||41.2||37.6||average||110%|
|Port Pirie Aerodrome||30.4||44.0||19th||15.4||7.6||5th||17.0|
|Snowtown (Rayville Park)||30.8||43.8||19th||11.9||4.9||24th||23.6|
|Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)|
|Kangaroo Island (district 22B)|
|Kingscote Aero||24.8||40.1||19th||11.3||5.7||30th||41.2||18.9||v high||218%|
|Parndana Cfs AWS||24.0||40.6||19th||11.2||5.5||5th||62.6|
|Adelaide Plains (district 23A)|
|Adelaide (Kent Town)||28.5||+1.5||43.4||19th||15.5||-0.1||8.5||5th||16.2||28.9||average||56%|
|County Light (district 23B)|
|Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre)||29.4||+1.2||43.6||19th||13.5||0.0||5.9||24th||27.9||24.4||average||114%|
|Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)|
|Kuitpo Forest Reserve||24.5||38.8||19th||12.5||6.0||5th||23.4|
|Mount Crawford (Mt Crawford AWS)||26.2||39.5||19th||12.1||4.9||5th||17.6||33.5||low||53%|
|Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS)||22.3||38.6||19th||11.9||6.4||5th||41.0||35.1||average||117%|
|Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay)||23.7||37.4||19th||12.6||6.5||30th||30.8|
|Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)|
|Loxton Research Centre||30.9||+1.3||43.0||20th||13.4||+0.4||8.2||5th||27.0||25.4||average||106%|
|Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)|
|Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome)||28.6||43.9||19th||12.1||4.9||24th||17.0|
|Murray Bridge Comparison||28.6||+1.0||43.8||19th||13.5||+0.3||7.2||6th||19.2||23.8||average||81%|
|Murray Mallee (district 25A)|
|Upper Southeast (district 25B)|
|Lameroo (Austin Plains)||30.2||44.0||19th||11.5||5.4||29th||6.0|
|Lower Southeast (district 26)|
|Cape Jaffa (The Limestone)||22.0||-0.8||38.6||19th||11.5||-0.8||6.8||17th||32.6||24.5||high||133%|
|Mount Gambier Aero||23.7||+0.8||40.2||19th||9.9||0.0||3.0||30th||31.6||38.6||average||82%|
A Monthly Climate Summary is prepared to list the main features of the weather in South Australia 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 3 pm on Wednesday 1 January 2014. 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.