Tasmania in December 2016: a cool start but a warm end, with some heavy rain

December started relatively cool in Tasmania, but some warm and humid weather toward the end of the month meant temperatures were above average overall. Much of the month was relatively dry for most of the State, but there was statewide rain up to the 9th and some heavy rain toward the end of the month.

Some heavy rain

  • Rainfall was above average in the north of the State, and close to average in most other areas; Scottsdale had its highest total December rainfall since 1993
  • Westerly winds brought moderate rain to much of Tasmania during the first nine days, with a low close to the State on the 8th giving some heavy falls
  • Localised heavy rain and thunderstorms brought some flash flooding on the 29th and 30th as a low of tropical origin passed close to the State
  • Much of the State saw little rain from the 10th through to the 28th

A cool start then a warm finish

  • Cool temperatures dominated the first three weeks (apart from the 12th and 13th), but warm weather dominated from the 23rd to the end of the month
  • Overall, temperatures were above average across the State, with nights especially warm in some areas
  • Some humid and warm nights in the last week of the month, with some sites staying well into the high teens on the 26th, 29th and 30th
  • Several sites reached into the low 30s on the 13th and the 25th, with 35.8 °C at Ouse the warmest for the month

Strong and damaging winds

  • Strong and gusty winds caused some damage in and around Hobart on the 14th; Hobart had a gust to 94 km/h and kunanyi / Mount Wellington reported 124 km/h
  • A combination of high astronomical tides, strong winds and low atmospheric pressure saw some low-lying roads covered with water on the 14th
  • Strong winds and difficult terrain made a 2000 hectare fire near Runnymede, northeast of Hobart, difficult to contain on the 17th

A wet end to the year in Hobart

  • Hobart saw little rain from the 10th until the 27th, but over 40 mm between the 27th and 30th; total rain of 56.6 mm was very close to the December average
  • A mean daily maximum temperature of 22.0 °C was 1.6 °C above the long-term average, and just 0.5 °C cooler than December 2015
  • Hobart's warmest day was the 13th, with a peak of 30.2 °C
  • A mean daily minimum of 12.2 °C was 1.4 °C above average; the coolest morning was the 18th with a minimum of 6.4 °C

Further information

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Extremes in December 2016
Hottest day 35.8 °C at Ouse Fire Station on the 25th
Warmest days on average 23.4 °C at Campania (Kincora)
Coolest days on average 12.2 °C at Mount Read
Coldest day 4.0 °C at Mount Read on the 14th
Coldest night -2.8 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on the 18th
Coolest nights on average 4.3 °C at Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Warmest nights on average 13.4 °C at Swan Island
Warmest night 20.0 °C at Bridport (Sea View Villas) on the 26th
Warmest on average overall 17.2 °C at Friendly Beaches
Coolest on average overall 8.4 °C at Mount Read
Wettest overall 319.6 mm at Mount Read
Wettest day 88.8 mm at Mount Victoria (Una Plain) on the 9th
Strongest wind gust 148 km/h at Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse on the 14th

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 December daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Macquarie Island 47.8 on the 15th 46.2 on the 21st in 2015 69



Record highest December total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Macquarie Island 177.2 139.6 in 2010 69 80.6

Highest December total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
December
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 114.2 127.4 in 1993 66.9



Record highest December daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 20.0 on the 26th = 20.0 on the 20th in 2015 23 11.1



Summary statistics for December 2016
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
December
2016
Diff
from
average
Highest for
December
2016
Mean for
December
2016
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
December
2016
Total for
December
2016
Average
for
December
Rank of
December
2016
Fraction of
December
average
Northern (district 91)
Bridport (Sea View Villas) 20.4 +0.3 25.5 29th 11.6 +0.5 3.5 18th 71.6 46.3 high 155%
Burnie (Round Hill) 19.9 +0.4 27.5 26th 10.9 -0.2 5.2 18th 80.8 63.4 average 127%
Cape Grim 17.1   23.3 25th 11.7   6.4 16th 57.2
Cape Grim BAPS (Comparison) 17.6 +0.2 23.3 24th 11.8 -0.1 7.3 19th 47.6 45.9 average 104%
Cressy Research Station 22.6 -0.2 32.6 25th 8.9 +0.4 1.6 19th 68.8 44.2 high 156%
Devonport Airport 19.9 +0.2 24.5 29th 11.2 +0.6 4.6 18th 89.6 53.3 high 168%
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 22.7 +0.2 31.5 25th 11.5 +0.8 4.4 18th 72.6 47.1 high 154%
Launceston Airport 22.5 0.0 32.2 25th 9.2 +0.3 1.7 18th 65.6 48.8 high 134%
Low Head 18.9 0.0 22.3 29th 13.1 +0.3 9.2 18th 75.2 43.4 v high 173%
Luncheon Hill (Forestry) 18.4 -0.3 30.6 25th 9.8 +1.1 4.6 18th 114.2 91.7 high 125%
Marrawah 18.7 +0.4 26.4 25th 11.2 +0.5 6.0 19th 69.8 63.6 average 110%
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 21.1 +0.2 30.5 25th 9.8 +0.6 1.6 15th 114.2 66.9 high 171%
Sheffield School Farm 19.4 -0.3 26.3 25th 9.4 +0.5 3.6 18th 135.2 68.7 high 197%
Smithton Aerodrome 19.9 +0.3 25.6 26th 9.7 0.0 2.2 19th 68.6 59.1 high 116%
Wynyard Airport 20.2 +0.5 27.7 26th 10.4 +0.8 2.7 18th 111.2 65.2 high 171%
East Coast (district 92)
Bicheno (Council Depot) 20.9 +0.8 28.7 13th 12.2 +0.6 5.1 18th 58.2 66.8 average 87%
Fingal (Legge Street) 22.1 +0.5 29.3 25th 8.7 0.0 1.0 15th 45.8 49.5 average 93%
Friendly Beaches 22.5 +0.7 31.1 13th 11.9 +0.2 6.5 18th 46.2 40.8 average 113%
Lake Leake (Elizabeth River) 19.1 +1.3 30.0 25th 7.7 +0.8 1.0 19th 74.3 71.8 high 103%
Larapuna (Eddystone Point) 20.6 +1.3 27.4 26th 12.4 +0.4 5.6 18th 76.2 59.7 high 128%
Maria Island (Point Lesueur) 20.1 +0.2 28.0 13th 12.5 +0.3 7.2 18th 35.2 45.0 average 78%
Orford (Aubin Court) 21.3 +0.9 29.9 13th 11.2 +0.6 5.8 19th 44.4 62.8 average 71%
St Helens Aerodrome 21.9 +0.8 28.3 30th 12.0 +0.3 5.4 18th 78.6 50.5 high 156%
Swan Island 19.1 -0.4 24.1 13th 13.4 +0.1 8.6 15th 52.4 48.3 average 108%
Swansea (Francis Street) 21.6   29.4 13th 10.8   4.3 19th 53.6
Midlands (district 93)
Ross (The Boulevards) 23.1 +0.4 34.0 25th 9.3 +0.7 1.4 19th 55.4 37.9 high 146%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania (Kincora) 23.4 +0.7 32.5 25th 10.4 +0.4 3.2 19th 46.0 38.9 average 118%
Cape Bruny (Cape Bruny) 19.1 +0.7 26.5 13th 10.7 +0.1 5.5 18th 57.8 56.5 average 102%
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 18.1 +1.1 26.0 13th 10.8 +0.5 6.0 18th 52.9 75.7 average 70%
Dennes Point 20.8   30.3 13th 11.6   6.3 18th 53.2
Dover 20.6 +1.4 29.5 13th 9.7 +0.7 3.8 19th 76.0 70.6 average 108%
Dunalley (Stroud Point) 21.2   30.4 13th 12.0   7.2 18th 46.6
Grove (Research Station) 21.5 +0.4 30.3 25th 9.2 +0.9 1.6 19th 72.4 59.5 average 122%
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 22.0 +1.6 30.2 13th 12.2 +1.4 6.4 18th 56.6 56.2 average 101%
Hobart Airport 22.0 +1.3 30.5 13th 11.7 +0.9 5.3 18th 44.4 52.0 average 85%
Kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) 12.9 +1.8 23.0 25th 4.3 +1.4 -2.8 18th 76.8 88.2 average 87%
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 15.5 -0.2 22.8 29th 9.9 +0.3 6.0 9th 93.6 90.0 average 104%
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 22.3 +0.5 34.4 25th 9.1 +0.1 1.7 19th 43.8 38.7 average 113%
Tasman Island 16.6 0.0 25.0 13th 9.8 -0.4 4.8 18th 92.4 61.8 high 150%
Tunnack Fire Station 19.7 +0.2 32.1 25th 8.0 +0.5 1.8 19th 35.0 51.4 low 68%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 23.3 +1.2 35.7 25th 9.5 +0.4 2.3 19th 55.2 50.3 average 110%
Maydena Post Office 19.5 -0.3 33.0 27th 7.1 -0.4 1.8 19th 89.5 85.3 average 105%
Ouse Fire Station 23.2 +0.1 35.8 25th 9.1 +0.4 1.7 19th 54.0 35.0 high 154%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Butlers Gorge 17.6 +0.9 30.2 25th 5.5 0.0 -1.4 19th 130.0 124.8 average 104%
Liawenee 16.8 +0.5 27.7 25th 4.6 +0.8 -1.2 18th 60.4 61.4 high 98%
West Coast (district 97)
Cape Sorell 18.4 +1.4 25.4 29th 11.7 +0.8 7.8 19th 82.0 80.8 average 101%
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 16.1 +1.2 30.3 25th 5.9 +0.7 -0.4 18th 92.0 80.0 high 115%
Low Rocky Point 18.0   27.4 29th 10.7   5.7 19th 108.0 90.2 average 120%
Mount Read 12.2 +0.3 26.8 25th 4.7 +0.7 -1.1 18th 319.6 289.5 high 110%
Scotts Peak Dam 20.0 +1.3 34.5 25th 8.2 +0.2 2.8 18th 157.2 147.2 high 107%
Strahan Aerodrome 19.9 +0.1 27.4 29th 10.4 +0.7 4.6 19th 92.0 95.0 average 97%
Warra 18.2 +0.8 30.7 25th 7.0 +0.1 1.0 19th 157.6 137.2 average 115%
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 19.3 +0.4 26.4 24th 11.0 -0.1 4.2 16th 37.0 49.2 average 75%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 21.7 +1.5 30.9 26th 12.6 +0.7 2.6 16th 23.2 57.3 low 40%
Hogan Island 20.1 +0.2 28.4 26th 13.0 -0.3 9.1 9th 21.4 43.9 low 49%
Antarctica and Macquarie Island (district 300)
Macquarie Island 8.5 +0.6 10.8 21st 5.2 +0.9 2.7 15th 177.2 80.6 highest 220%

Notes

The Monthly climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each month, lists the main features of the weather in Tasmania 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 8 am on Tuesday 3 January 2017. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

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.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries