South Australia in May 2022: wetter and cooler than average

Rainfall was higher than average for May across patches of South Australia, particularly in the east, tending to near-average elsewhere. Days were cooler than average for much of the state away from the southern coastline, while nights were cooler than average across the Western Agricultural district, tending to warmer than average in the north-west and north-east.

Record breaking rain at the end of May

  • Overall, South Australia's rainfall was 11% above average (1961–1990) for May and the wettest since 2016.
  • Many sites had their highest May daily rainfall on record on the 30th when a cold front and associated low pressure system brought widespread showers and strong to gale force and gusty winds over much of South Australia, including isolated thunderstorms in the south.
  • A weak tornado was reported at Salisbury in Adelaide's northern suburbs around 5am on the 30th, damaging houses and trees.
  • Rainfall was above average for May across parts of the Murray, Mallee, Far North, Northwest and Western Agricultural rainfall districts; elsewhere, rainfall was mostly close to average.
  • Some sites in the south-east had their highest total May rainfall on record.
  • Other sites in the south-east had their highest total May rainfall for at least 20 years.

Cooler than average days and nights for central South Australia

  • Maximum temperatures were cooler than average for most of the state's eastern and central interior, extending to the coast around Ceduna.
  • Minimum temperatures were cooler than average across the Western Agricultural district, but warmer than average in the north-east and north-west.
  • Days were cooler than average at times during the middle and end of the month, with maximum temperatures more than 8 °C cooler than average for pockets of the interior on the 18th and 19th, and more than 10 °C cooler than average in the far north-west on the 30th.
  • The mean maximum temperature for South Australia as a whole was 0.30 °C cooler than the 1961–1990 average.
  • South Australia's mean minimum temperature was very close to the long-term average (0.01 °C below average).

Further information

Media
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Extremes in May 2022
Hottest day 29.0 °C at Oodnadatta Airport on the 14th
Warmest days on average 22.3 °C at Oodnadatta Airport
Coolest days on average 12.7 °C at Mount Lofty
Coldest day 7.5 °C at Mount Lofty on the 31st
Coldest night -2.5 °C at Yongala on the 7th
Coolest nights on average 5.0 °C at Yongala
Warmest nights on average 13.9 °C at Neptune Island
Warmest night 17.1 °C at Edithburgh on the 14th
17.1 °C at Noarlunga on the 14th
Warmest on average overall 16.6 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest on average overall 10.1 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 183.4 mm at Ashton
Wettest day 76.0 mm at Adelaide (Salisbury Bowling Club) on the 30th
Strongest wind gust 94 km/h at Neptune Island on the 31st

Maps
ObservedAnomalyDecile rank
Total
rainfall
Map of Rainfall totals Map of Percentage of normal rainfall Map of Rainfall deciles
Mean
daily
maximum
temperatures
Map of Mean maximum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature
Mean
daily
minimum
temperatures
Map of Mean minimum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean minimum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature

Click on a map to show it full size in a pop-up window


Record highest May daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Adelaide (Salisbury Bowling Club) 76.0 on the 30th 49.8 on the 26th in 1910 138
Gumeracha 74.6 on the 31st 69.3 on the 14th in 1908 133
Port Vincent 46.0 on the 30th 39.6 on the 8th in 1923 119
Wirrulla 48.0 on the 30th 36.8 on the 13th in 1974 99
Stockport (Clifton) 51.0 on the 30th 43.2 on the 9th in 1989 63
Williamstown (South Para Reservoir) 56.2 on the 30th 52.4 on the 17th in 2008 55
Edinburgh RAAF 46.4 on the 30th 31.0 on the 17th in 2008 50
Adelaide (Hope Valley Reservoir) 45.0 on the 30th 36.8 on the 25th in 1999 43
Kingscote Aero 35.0 on the 30th 31.0 on the 3rd in 1997 29
Mount Crawford AWS 50.6 on the 30th 43.8 on the 17th in 2008 28
Minnipa PIRSA 33.2 on the 30th 27.8 on the 25th in 2009 26
Nuriootpa PIRSA 45.2 on the 30th 34.2 on the 19th in 2002 26
Marree (Callanna) 26.2 on the 30th 22.2 on the 8th in 2016 25
Roseworthy AWS 46.0 on the 30th 35.6 on the 4th in 2014 25
Wudinna Aero 22.4 on the 30th 17.0 on the 23rd in 2002 24
Cudlee Creek (Odea Road) 53.2 on the 30th 43.0 on the 17th in 2008 22
Gould Creek (Hermitage) 72.4 on the 30th 40.2 on the 26th in 2016 22
Kersbrook 63.0 on the 30th 46.4 on the 17th in 2008 22
Lenswood (Stringybark) 53.2 on the 30th 44.2 on the 17th in 2008 22
Lobethal (Maidment Road) 61.6 on the 30th 43.6 on the 17th in 2008 22
Minlaton Aero 43.2 on the 30th 27.6 on the 19th in 2015 22
Mt Torrens 45.0 on the 30th 37.2 on the 20th in 2003 22
Ashton 68.8 on the 30th 66.8 on the 17th in 2008 21
Halbury Road Salisbury (Halbury Road) 58.4 on the 30th 29.8 on the 26th in 2016 21
Athelstone (Black Hill Alert) 51.8 on the 30th 39.2 on the 17th in 2008 20
Belair (St Johns) 45.4 on the 30th 43.6 on the 26th in 2016 20
Long Ridge (Greenhill) 42.2 on the 30th 30.4 on the 17th in 2008 20
Montacute 49.8 on the 30th 40.0 on the 7th in 2004 20
Rosslyn Park (Seaview) 40.2 on the 30th 35.4 on the 17th in 2008 20
Shea-Oak Log (Greenock Creek) 40.2 on the 30th 32.0 on the 26th in 2016 20



Record highest May total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
May
Port Parham 87.8 86.9 in 1974 53 38.7
Edinburgh RAAF 112.8 87.8 in 1988 50 46.1
Renmark Aero 44.0 40.6 in 2013 27 16.9
Roseworthy AWS 78.8 69.8 in 2016 25 39.5
Brownhill Creek (Scotch College) 100.8 94.2 in 2002 24 63.4
Adelaide (Keswick) 96.2 87.8 in 2019 22 55.8
Gould Creek (Hermitage) 123.0 108.6 in 2016 22 62.3
Halbury Road Salisbury (Halbury Road) 99.6 70.8 in 2016 21 45.6
Long Ridge (Greenhill) 116.8 100.0 in 2019 20 70.5
Rosslyn Park (Seaview) 113.8 106.8 in 2016 20 68.5

Highest May total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
May
Stockport (Clifton) 89.2 102.9 in 1968* 47.0
Pinnaroo 56.4 61.9 in 1971* 33.2
Truro 99.2 116.7 in 1988 52.4
Berri 46.8 58.2 in 1992 22.0
Lyrup 50.6 54.6 in 1992 21.9
Bower 44.5 57.8 in 1992* 23.9
Port Vincent 59.4 67.0 in 1995 37.8
Paruna 58.0 61.4 in 1992* 27.6
Adelaide (Glen Osmond) 105.2 140.2 in 1999* 77.9
North Adelaide 79.4 82.8 in 2001 63.9

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a higher value has gone unreported




Record lowest May temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
May
Wudinna Aero -1.2 on the 21st -0.3 on the 30th in 2019 24 8.6



Summary statistics for May 2022
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
May
2022
Diff
from
average
Highest for
May
2022
Mean for
May
2022
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
May
2022
Total for
May
2022
Average
for
May
Rank of
May
2022
Fraction of
May
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 20.9 -1.4 24.5 3rd 10.1 +0.1 6.4 7th 6.4 15.0 average 43%
Coober Pedy Airport 20.6 -1.5 26.2 13th 9.3 -0.7 5.8 8th 22.8 10.0 high 228%
Ernabella (Pukatja) 20.6 -1.3 27.7 13th 8.4 +0.1 1.5 7th 14.8 14.0 average 106%
Mount Ive 20.0   25.0 3rd       19.4 24.8 average 78%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 20.5 -1.8 24.0 25th 8.0 -0.2 3.8 8th 5.0 8.6 average 58%
Tarcoola Aero 21.0 -1.4 25.7 13th 7.6 -0.5 3.2 8th 23.4 11.2 high 209%
Woomera Aerodrome 19.6 -1.1 23.5 13th 9.3 -0.1 5.5 7th 13.6 17.5 average 78%
Far North (district 17)
Leigh Creek Airport 20.1 -1.0 23.5 23rd 8.6 -0.2 3.4 29th 3.0 16.3 average 18%
Marree Aero 21.3 -2.0 24.8 14th 9.2 0.0 5.2 8th 21.8 7.7 high 283%
Moomba Airport 22.1 -1.7 26.5 14th 11.2 +0.6 6.3 7th 2.2 9.3 average 24%
Oodnadatta Airport 22.3 -1.0 29.0 14th 9.5 -0.3 4.7 8th 14.0 12.1 high 116%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 20.3 -0.6 25.3 3rd 7.3 -1.3 0.2 11th 48.2 32.4 high 149%
Cleve 19.0 0.0 24.4 3rd 9.6 -0.5 5.9 7th 39.2 40.2 average 98%
Cleve Aerodrome 18.9 -0.4 24.6 3rd 9.1 -1.3 5.4 7th 29.6 36.3 average 82%
Coffin Bay (Point Avoid) 18.8   22.8 23rd 11.2   6.5 7th 68.6
Cultana (Defence) 19.9   24.7 3rd 9.0   5.3 5th 20.6
Cummins Aero 19.4 -0.2 24.2 23rd 7.1 -1.4 2.1 10th 44.6 43.8 average 102%
Elliston 19.7 +0.2 25.0 23rd 9.7 -0.7 4.2 22nd 73.1 52.3 high 140%
Kimba 18.8 -0.6 24.0 3rd 7.9 -0.5 4.0 6th 41.8 35.1 average 119%
Kyancutta 20.9 -0.2 26.6 3rd 6.1 -1.3 -1.2 21st 36.9 31.7 average 116%
Minnipa PIRSA 19.4 -0.8 24.3 3rd 9.2 -0.6 5.3 7th 63.8 28.9 v high 221%
Neptune Island 17.8 0.0 20.1 3rd 13.9 +0.1 10.4 6th 74.2 53.4 high 139%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 19.6 +0.1 24.2 3rd 9.5 -0.9 5.3 29th 53.4 43.6 average 122%
Nullarbor 21.5 0.0 27.7 13th 8.0 -0.9 3.8 7th 33.6 29.6 average 114%
Port Augusta Aero 21.0 -0.6 25.4 14th 7.9 -0.8 1.6 7th 24.0 17.2 high 140%
Streaky Bay 19.7 -0.4 22.9 23rd 9.8 -1.1 4.9 22nd 73.7 46.4 high 159%
Whyalla Aero 19.6 -0.9 25.4 3rd 7.7 -1.1 3.3 10th 14.2 23.2 low 61%
Wudinna Aero 20.8 0.0 25.4 3rd 7.1 -1.5 -1.2 21st 32.8 23.5 high 140%
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker     22.4 14th 7.3 +0.1 0.8 7th 3.2 30.0 low 11%
Yongala 17.0 -0.1 21.7 14th 5.0 +0.4 -2.5 7th 40.0 34.5 average 116%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 19.7 -0.8 24.3 3rd 6.4 +0.4 0.0 21st 17.4 18.2 average 96%
Yunta Airstrip 18.2 -1.1 22.2 3rd 6.1 +0.4 1.2 8th 16.4 11.3 high 145%
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 17.1 0.0 21.8 13th 6.6 +0.1 0.6 7th 65.6 53.3 average 123%
Port Pirie Aerodrome AWS 20.4   24.6 3rd 8.4   4.9 5th 38.6
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 19.8 -0.1 24.2 3rd 6.6 -0.8 0.2 6th 36.8 35.8 average 103%
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 18.5 0.0 23.9 3rd 10.5 -0.2 3.8 29th 67.0 45.0 high 149%
Kadina AWS 19.4 0.0 24.1 3rd 8.0 -0.3 3.5 19th 38.6 38.1 average 101%
Minlaton Aero 19.3 -0.1 22.8 3rd 9.3 -0.6 4.1 20th 65.8 40.7 v high 162%
Stenhouse Bay 18.6 0.0 23.8 23rd 11.9 -0.1 7.1 29th 54.6 53.0 average 103%
Warooka       10.4 -0.1 5.9 5th 78.9 54.0 high 146%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 16.5 -0.4 19.1 3rd 10.8 -0.5 7.3 6th 88.0 69.3 high 127%
Cape Willoughby 17.0 0.0 22.0 3rd 12.3 -0.3 8.0 6th 43.8 61.3 average 71%
Kingscote Aero 18.6 0.0 23.0 3rd 6.8 -1.2 2.2 11th 68.2 49.4 high 138%
Parndana CFS AWS 16.9 -0.2 20.5 3rd 8.5 -0.8 4.8 11th 91.4 66.5 high 137%
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 18.9 +0.3 23.3 3rd 10.5 +0.1 5.2 20th 86.8 67.9 high 128%
Adelaide Airport 18.7 +0.1 23.2 23rd 10.4 +0.7 4.8 20th 63.2 53.4 average 118%
Edinburgh RAAF 18.8 -0.4 24.2 3rd 9.1 -0.1 3.4 19th 112.8 46.1 highest 245%
Parafield Airport 19.5 +0.5 24.0 3rd 9.4 +0.1 3.9 19th 37.0 47.8 average 77%
Roseworthy AWS 19.3 -0.4 24.5 3rd 8.3 -0.3 1.0 20th 78.8 39.5 highest 199%
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa PIRSA 16.9 -0.5 22.3 3rd 7.3 +0.4 0.1 10th 87.0 48.5 v high 179%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 17.8 -0.7 23.1 3rd 10.2 -0.3 5.8 21st 71.6 44.6 high 161%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 15.2 -0.7 19.8 3rd 9.0 -0.3 4.4 5th 100.2 87.1 average 115%
Mount Crawford AWS 14.3 -0.6 19.6 3rd 8.1 -0.5 3.8 6th 106.8 70.0 high 153%
Mount Lofty 12.7 +0.4 17.2 3rd 7.4 -0.4 3.4 5th 161.8 109.9 high 147%
Noarlunga 18.4 0.0 22.5 23rd 11.1 -0.4 6.3 20th 89.8 55.1 high 163%
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 15.0 +0.1 19.1 23rd 9.6 0.0 6.3 5th 127.2 98.1 high 130%
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 18.2 -0.4 22.9 3rd 7.9 -0.8 1.1 21st 91.2 63.0 high 145%
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 19.0 -0.6 23.6 3rd 7.4 +1.0 1.5 19th 46.6 23.4 high 199%
Renmark Aero 19.0 -1.1 23.6 3rd 7.4 +0.9 1.6 19th 44.0 16.9 highest 260%
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 15.7 -1.3 21.4 2nd 8.0 +0.4 2.5 21st 70.1 45.2 high 155%
Meningie 18.4 +0.1 23.1 3rd 9.4 +0.5 4.3 21st 56.8 54.9 average 103%
Murray Bridge 19.3 -0.3 25.1 3rd 7.7 -0.4 2.8 10th 37.5 35.2 average 107%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 18.9 -0.3 24.1 3rd 6.7 -0.8 1.1 10th 30.0 31.3 average 96%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 17.8 -0.7 23.0 3rd 8.7 -0.4 2.1 21st 64.8 44.9 high 144%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 18.4 0.0 23.9 3rd 8.0 +0.2 2.0 6th 54.4 52.0 average 105%
Keith (Munkora) 18.4 -0.3 24.8 3rd 6.8 -0.2 -0.2 6th 46.6 40.9 average 114%
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 18.1 -0.6 23.5 3rd 7.4 +0.3 1.0 6th 44.6 29.7 high 150%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 17.2 +0.3 21.0 13th 9.8 +0.4 3.9 21st 71.4 55.8 high 128%
Coonawarra 17.4 +0.2 23.3 3rd 7.4 +0.4 -0.5 10th 57.8 55.9 average 103%
Mount Gambier Aero 16.9 +0.8 22.2 3rd 7.5 +0.1 0.7 23rd 86.4 73.2 average 118%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 17.7 0.0 23.8 3rd 7.7 +0.4 -0.5 21st 51.4 42.8 average 120%
Padthaway South 17.6 0.0 23.7 3rd 7.4 +0.4 -0.4 20th 49.2 45.4 average 108%
Robe 16.5 +0.1 19.2 13th 10.3 +0.1 5.9 21st 78.4 73.6 average 107%
Robe Airfield 17.5 +0.1 22.0 13th 8.7 0.0 1.3 10th 82.2 68.3 high 120%

Notes

The Monthly climate summary, usually published in the first week of the following month, lists 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. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 11 am on Wednesday 1 June 2022. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites 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.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Information about Australian Indigenous seasonal calendars is available at the Indigenous Weather Knowledge website.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

Climate