Brisbane in summer 2016-17: Persistent hot days, dry end to the season

Brisbane had its warmest summer on record in terms of mean temperature. Brisbane's mean maximum temperature was the third-warmest on record, while the mean minimum temperature was the equal-highest on record. Exceptionally hot days occurred during February. Rainfall was well below average at metropolitan locations throughout the season, with a particularly dry February.

Very warm summer overall; record high temperatures

  • Brisbane had its warmest summer of record in terms of mean temperature, with 26.8 °C (+1.7 °C above average)
  • Brisbane had its equal-warmest mean minimum temperature on record, matching the record observed in the summer of 1979-80 
  • Brisbane's mean maximum temperature was third-warmest on record, while other locations in the metropolitan area reported their hottest summer days on record
  • Brisbane had a record run of 30 consecutive days above 30 °C between 28 January 2017 to 26 February 2017 (previous record was 19 days, set in 2002)
  • Brisbane Airport, Logan and Archerfield had their warmest summer nights on record
  • The persistent warmth throughout the season saw some sites observe their highest summer mean temperature on record

Below average rainfall in Brisbane

  • Summer rainfall totals ranged from 160 mm to 350 mm across the metropolitan area: the wettest location was the Brisbane site with 351.0 mm
  • All locations recorded less than 80% of the average summer rainfall, with Brisbane Airport and Redcliffe receiving around 50% of the seasonal average
  • Summer in Brisbane saw: some locally heavy falls occurring in December, despite below average December totals;  followed by above average January rainfall in Brisbane and western suburbs; and a dry February where all locations recorded less than 30% of their average February rainfall

Severe thunderstorms 

  • Severe thunderstorms moved through the Brisbane metropolitan area on 18 December, with wind gusts up to 100km/h recorded at Amberley, and heavy rainfall recorded in and around Ipswich caused flash flooding
  • A line of severe thunderstorms formed over the southeast coast on 13 February, affecting parts of the greater Brisbane area with very strong wind gusts of up to 115 km/h recorded at the Inner Reciprocal Marker in Moreton Bay

Further information

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Extremes in summer 2016-17
Hottest day 43.0 °C at Amberley AMO on 12 Feb 2017
Warmest days on average 32.7 °C at Amberley AMO
Coolest days on average 29.5 °C at Brisbane Aero
Coldest day 25.4 °C at Redcliffe on 10 Dec 2016 and on 3 Jan 2017
Coldest night 13.7 °C at Amberley AMO on 13 Dec 2016
Coolest nights on average 20.0 °C at Amberley AMO
Warmest nights on average 22.9 °C at Redcliffe
Warmest night 28.0 °C at Brisbane on 21 Jan 2017
Warmest on average overall 26.8 °C at Brisbane
Coolest on average overall 25.8 °C at Brisbane Aero
Wettest overall 351.0 mm at Brisbane
Driest overall 202.2 mm at Redcliffe
Wettest day 98.0 mm at Brisbane on 3 Jan 2017
Strongest wind gust 100 km/h at Amberley AMO on 18 Dec 2016

Record highest summer mean daily maximum temperature

New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
summer
Archerfield Airport 32.1 31.5 in 2005 40 29.9
Logan City Water Treatment Plant 31.2 30.8 in 2005 24 29.4



Record highest summer mean daily minimum temperature

New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
summer
Brisbane^ 22.3 =22.3 in 1979 117 20.4
Archerfield Airport 21.3 21.2 in 1997 40 19.8
Logan City Water Treatment Plant 21.5 21.3 in 2009 24 20.0
Brisbane Aero 22.1 22.0 in 1997 22 20.8
^New record, Old record and Years of record calculated using old (closed) and current (open) sites. Average calculated using old (closed) and current (open) sites.

Record highest summer mean temperature

New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
summer
Brisbane^ 26.8 26.6 in 1979 117 25.1
Archerfield Airport 26.7 26.3 in 2005 40 24.8
Logan City Water Treatment Plant 26.4 26.0 in 2005 24 24.7
^New record, Old record and Years of record calculated using old (closed) and current (open) sites. Average calculated using old (closed) and current (open) sites.


Summary statistics for summer 2016-17

Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
summer
2016-17
Diff
from
average
Highest for
summer
2016-17
Mean for
summer
2016-17
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
summer
2016-17
Total for
summer
2016-17
Average
for
summer
Rank of
summer
2016-17
Fraction of
summer
average
Amberley AMO 32.7 +1.9 43.0 12 Feb 2017 20.0 +0.8 13.7 13 Dec 2016 274.8 358.3 average 77%
Archerfield Airport 32.1 +2.2 40.0 12 Feb 2017 21.3 +1.5 15.5 13 Dec 2016 240.8 413.0 low 58%
Brisbane 31.3 +2.1 37.6 12 Feb 2017 22.3 +1.9 17.8 13 Dec 2016 351.0 440.0 average 80%
Brisbane Aero 29.5 +0.8 33.3 21 Jan 2017 22.1 +1.3 17.4 13 Dec 2016 202.4 392.0 low 52%
Logan City Water Treatment Plant 31.2 +1.8 38.5 12 Feb 2017 21.5 +1.5 16.4 13 Dec 2016 251.7 392.6 low 64%
Redcliffe 29.7 +1.1 35.9 21 Jan 2017 22.9 +1.3 19.3 13 Dec 2016 202.2 369.1 low 55%
*Brisbane's maximum and minimum temperature anomalies are calculated using the old (closed) and current (open) sites. 

Notes

The Seasonal climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each month, lists the main features of the weather in Brisbane 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 9 am on Wednesday 1 March 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