South Australia in summer 2019-20: warm with average to above average rainfall in some areas

Rainfall in summer was generally close to average or above average over many areas of South Australia, though it was a drier than average season in parts of the Northeast Pastoral district and in the far west. Daytime temperatures were warmer than average across the State, while night-time temperatures were close to average in the south and above average in the northern Pastoral districts.

Average to above average rainfall in central areas and the South East

  • For South Australia as a whole, rainfall in summer was 31% below average, but there were many parts of the State, including central districts and the South East, that had near or above average rainfall for the season
  • Summer was drier than average in parts of the Northeast Pastoral district and in the far west of the State
  • Summer began with the State's driest December since 1972
  • Thunderstorms brought heavy rain and localised flash flooding to some areas at the start of February, giving a wet end to the season for central districts and the South East
  • A few sites had their highest summer daily rainfall on record

Sixth-warmest summer on record, despite a cool February

  • Daytime temperatures were above average to very much above average over most of the State for summer
  • The overall mean temperature for South Australia was 1.54 °C above average, the sixth-warmest summer on record
  • The season began with South Australia's warmest December on record but ended with a cooler than average February
  • Heatwaves in December saw several sites have their highest summer temperature on record
  • In early January, a day of cold south to southeasterly winds saw some sites have their coldest summer day on record
  • The State's mean maximum temperature for summer was 2.05 °C above average, the fourth-highest on record
  • Night-time temperatures for summer were near-average or warmer than average across the State
  • Mean minimum temperatures were particularly warm in the north, with areas of very much above average to highest on record in the Pastoral districts
  • Areas of cooler than average minimum temperatures in February were offset by South Australia's highest mean minimum temperature on record for December
  • In December, several sites had their warmest summer night on record
  • The mean minimum temperature for summer was 1.02 °C above average for South Australia as a whole

Strong winds at times

  • There were several days of strong northerly winds ahead of cold fronts in December and January
  • The strongest recorded wind gust during summer was 128 km/h at Kadina on the Yorke Peninsula during the afternoon of 20 December 2019
  • Particularly in December and January, strong winds and low humidity combined with high temperatures to create dangerous fire weather conditions, including some days with catastrophic fire danger ratings

Further information

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Extremes in summer 2019-20
Hottest day 49.9 °C at Nullarbor on 19 Dec 2019
Warmest days on average 38.8 °C at Oodnadatta Airport
Coolest days on average 21.7 °C at Cape Willoughby
Coldest day 10.9 °C at Mount Lofty on 1 Dec 2019
Coldest night 1.2 °C at Keith (Munkora) on 7 Dec 2019
Coolest nights on average 11.5 °C at Naracoorte Aerodrome
Warmest nights on average 24.4 °C at Moomba Airport
Warmest night 34.9 °C at Marree Aero on 20 Dec 2019
Warmest on average overall 31.4 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest on average overall 18.2 °C at Robe Airfield
Wettest overall 164.0 mm at Crafers West
Wettest day 103.0 mm at Naracoorte (View Bank) on 20 Jan 2020
103.0 mm at Yudnapinna on 1 Feb 2020
Strongest wind gust 128 km/h at Kadina AWS on 20 Dec 2019

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 summer daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Coober Pedy Airport 68.0 on 1 Feb 2020 49.6 on 19 Jan 2007 27
Minnipa Pirsa 46.0 on 1 Feb 2020 43.8 on 12 Dec 2008 25
Naracoorte (View Bank) 103.0 on 20 Jan 2020 75.0 on 13 Dec 2008 20



Record highest summer temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
summer
Ceduna AMO 48.9 on 19 Dec 2019 48.6 on 24 Jan 2019 80 28.2
Mount Gambier Aero 45.9 on 20 Dec 2019 44.9 on 2 Feb 2014 79 24.6
Woomera Aerodrome 48.2 on 20 Dec 2019 48.1 on 25 Jan 2011 71 33.6
Keith 47.8 on 20 Dec 2019 46.5 on 2 Feb 2014 59 29.2
Hawker 46.1 on 19 Dec 2019 46.0 on 24 Jan 2019 48 33.3
Loxton Research Centre 47.3 on 20 Dec 2019 47.1 on 7 Feb 2009 36 31.2
Coonawarra 45.8 on 20 Dec 2019 44.5 on 28 Jan 2009 35 26.7
Nullarbor 49.9 on 19 Dec 2019 48.5 on 2 Jan 1990 34 27.6
Coober Pedy Airport 48.3 on 20 Dec 2019 47.8 on 16 Jan 2019 26 35.7
Renmark Aero 48.6 on 20 Dec 2019 48.2 on 7 Feb 2009 25 32.7
Ernabella (Pukatja) 45.1 on 24 Dec 2019 44.5 on 15 Jan 2019 23 34.5
Naracoorte Aerodrome 47.7 on 20 Dec 2019 45.8 on 14 Jan 2014 22 28.9
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 48.6 on 20 Dec 2019 47.5 on 7 Feb 2009 21 32.8
Wudinna Aero 48.4 on 19 Dec 2019 48.2 on 4 Jan 2013 21 32.5
Padthaway South 46.1 on 20 Dec 2019 45.1 on 28 Jan 2009 20 28.3



Record lowest summer daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
summer
Woomera Aerodrome 15.9 on 5 Jan 2020 16.3 on 23 Feb 1967 71 33.6
Loxton Research Centre 14.8 on 5 Jan 2020 16.3 on 28 Feb 1987 36 31.2
Clare High School 13.5 on 5 Jan 2020 14.8 on 2 Feb 2005 26 29.3
Coober Pedy Airport 15.5 on 5 Jan 2020 18.2 on 6 Feb 2011 26 35.7
Renmark Aero 15.6 on 5 Jan 2020 17.5 on 3 Feb 2005 25 32.7
Roseworthy AWS 17.3 on 5 Jan 2020 = 17.3 on 13 Dec 2018 23 31.0
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 17.5 on 5 Jan 2020 18.9 on 6 Feb 2011 23 35.9
Tarcoola Aero 16.4 on 5 Jan 2020 18.5 on 31 Jan 2018 23 35.6
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 16.4 on 5 Jan 2020 17.2 on 14 Dec 2016 22 31.8
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 15.2 on 5 Jan 2020 18.5 on 13 Dec 2018 21 32.8



Record highest summer daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
summer
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 33.6 on 20 Dec 2019 33.2 on 10 Jan 1939 96 16.2
Edinburgh RAAF 34.2 on 20 Dec 2019 34.0 on 24 Jan 1982 48 16.0
Maitland 32.0 on 20 Dec 2019 31.1 on 31 Jan 1968 39 15.3
Leigh Creek Airport 33.2 on 20 Dec 2019 = 33.2 on 16 Feb 2004 37 20.1
Renmark Aero 30.4 on 31 Jan 2020 29.9 on 19 Dec 2015 25 15.6
Ernabella (Pukatja) 30.5 on 25 Dec 2019 30.0 on 2 Jan 2014 23 20.2
Marree Aero 34.9 on 20 Dec 2019 34.2 on 29 Jan 2018 22 21.9
Yunta Airstrip 32.0 on 20 Dec 2019 31.4 on 22 Jan 2006 22 15.7
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 31.0 on 31 Jan 2020 30.2 on 29 Jan 2009 21 15.1



Summary statistics for summer 2019-20
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
summer
2019-20
Diff
from
average
Highest for
summer
2019-20
Mean for
summer
2019-20
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
summer
2019-20
Total for
summer
2019-20
Average
for
summer
Rank of
summer
2019-20
Fraction of
summer
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 36.1 +0.5 47.2 19 Dec 2019 21.2 +0.4 13.0 1 Dec 2019 41.6 59.8 average 70%
Coober Pedy Airport 36.4 +0.7 48.3 20 Dec 2019 21.5 +0.2 12.2 1 Dec 2019 101.0 46.9 high 215%
Ernabella (Pukatja) 36.4 +1.9 45.1 24 Dec 2019 21.7 +1.5 11.9 1 Dec 2019 66.0 124.8 low 53%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 35.9 0.0 47.4 20 Dec 2019 20.6 +0.4 11.7 5 Dec 2019 11.0 44.8 low 25%
Tarcoola Aero 36.2 +0.6 48.0 20 Dec 2019 18.9 0.0 7.8 4 Dec 2019 32.8 54.9 average 60%
Woomera Aerodrome 34.7 +1.1 48.2 20 Dec 2019 19.7 +0.8 12.4 1 Dec 2019 88.2 50.0 high 176%
Far North (district 17)
Leigh Creek Airport 35.6 +0.9 46.2 20 Dec 2019 20.6 +0.5 11.7 1 Dec 2019 95.2 70.9 average 134%
Marree Aero 38.0 +0.5 48.0 19 Dec 2019 21.7 -0.2 14.2 4 Dec 2019 44.6 58.1 average 77%
Moomba Airport 38.4 +0.7 47.3 10 Jan 2020 24.4 +0.7 15.2 4 Dec 2019 12.4 52.5 low 24%
Oodnadatta Airport 38.8 +1.8 48.4 19 Dec 2019 22.7 +0.4 13.5 1 Dec 2019 13.4 70.1 low 19%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 29.2 +1.0 48.9 19 Dec 2019 15.3 +0.4 5.4 4 Dec 2019 28.0 47.0 average 60%
Cleve 28.3 +0.7 45.9 20 Dec 2019 16.0 +0.7 8.3 1 Dec 2019 52.2 64.4 average 81%
Cleve Aerodrome 28.6 +0.2 46.6 20 Dec 2019 15.5 0.0 8.2 4 Dec 2019 41.6 59.0 average 71%
Coffin Bay (Point Avoid) 24.9   43.4 30 Jan 2020 15.3   10.0 21 Jan 2020 30.8
Cultana (Defence) 32.4   47.0 19 Dec 2019 17.3   9.7 3 Dec 2019 76.4
Cummins Aero 29.8 +0.4 45.6 3 Jan 2020 13.4 -1.2 4.1 21 Jan 2020 42.6 57.4 low 74%
Elliston 27.7 +2.2 43.5 30 Jan 2020 16.2 +0.7 6.7 5 Dec 2019 15.8 40.8 low 39%
Kyancutta 33.7 +1.6 48.0 20 Dec 2019 14.3 +0.3 5.2 4 Dec 2019
Minnipa Pirsa 32.5 +0.5 47.2 19 Dec 2019 15.6 +0.1 8.2 4 Dec 2019 63.6 44.3 high 144%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 26.3 +0.6 45.6 20 Dec 2019 15.0 -0.3 8.8 1 Jan 2020 24.0 48.8 low 49%
Nullarbor 29.2 +1.6 49.9 19 Dec 2019 15.7 +0.2 5.1 4 Dec 2019 24.2 42.6 average 57%
Port Augusta Aero 32.9 -0.4 48.5 19 Dec 2019 19.0 +0.4 11.2 1 Dec 2019 97.0 55.1 high 176%
Streaky Bay 29.1 +0.5 47.1 19 Dec 2019 14.7 -1.1 9.1 13 Dec 2019 26.0 40.2 average 65%
Whyalla Aero 29.4 -0.1 45.8 20 Dec 2019 17.3 +0.1 9.9 5 Dec 2019 64.8 60.5 average 107%
Wudinna Aero 33.2 +0.7 48.4 19 Dec 2019     4.1 4 Dec 2019 18.8 45.5 low 41%
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker 33.4 +0.1 46.1 19 Dec 2019 17.8 +0.5 9.8 4 Dec 2019 67.7 63.2 average 107%
Yongala 30.6 +0.7 43.1 19 Dec 2019     6.0 13 Dec 2019 104.6 68.8 high 152%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 33.0 +0.2 48.6 20 Dec 2019 14.9 -0.2 7.0 27 Feb 2020 38.7 74.0 low 52%
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 29.4 +0.1 44.3 19 Dec 2019 13.8 -0.4 5.2 5 Dec 2019 92.8 86.3 average 108%
Port Pirie Aerodrome AWS 32.1   47.5 19 Dec 2019 16.1   8.9 13 Dec 2019 73.4
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 31.8 0.0 46.9 20 Dec 2019 13.7 -0.1 4.7 7 Dec 2019 56.4 64.3 average 88%
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 25.3 +0.4 47.0 20 Dec 2019 16.0 -0.3 7.3 5 Dec 2019 54.0 47.5 high 114%
Kadina AWS 30.5 -0.4 46.0 19 Dec 2019 14.6 -0.2 4.7 5 Dec 2019 40.8 55.9 average 73%
Minlaton Aero 29.1 +0.4 45.8 20 Dec 2019 14.5 -0.2 6.8 7 Dec 2019 51.2 50.6 average 101%
Stenhouse Bay 24.6 +0.1 43.8 30 Jan 2020 16.1 -0.2 9.7 15 Dec 2019 51.0 49.4 average 103%
Warooka 27.2 +0.5 41.6 30 Jan 2020     10.5 5 Dec 2019 54.6 49.9 average 109%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 24.4 +0.4 40.0 18 Dec 2019 14.3 +0.3 6.5 7 Dec 2019 11.0 57.4 v low 19%
Cape Willoughby 21.7 +0.2 38.8 30 Jan 2020 15.8 +0.2 9.9 1 Dec 2019 58.4 59.8 average 98%
Kingscote Aero 26.4 +0.2 42.3 20 Dec 2019 12.7 0.0 4.5 7 Dec 2019 82.2 53.9 high 153%
Parndana Cfs AWS 25.9   42.3 30 Jan 2020 12.6   5.2 15 Dec 2019 67.0
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (Kent Town) 29.3 +0.5 45.2 19 Dec 2019 17.0 +0.2 9.4 7 Dec 2019 76.0 64.7 average 117%
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 28.6 +0.6 45.3 19 Dec 2019 16.5 +0.3 8.6 7 Dec 2019 66.0 66.6 average 99%
Adelaide Airport 27.4 0.0 43.9 19 Dec 2019 16.4 +0.7 9.3 7 Dec 2019 50.8 60.3 average 84%
Edinburgh RAAF 29.3 -0.1 46.6 20 Dec 2019 16.4 +0.4 8.5 7 Dec 2019 50.2 63.8 average 79%
Parafield Airport 30.2 +1.2 46.7 20 Dec 2019 15.7 -0.2 7.4 7 Dec 2019 48.2 64.6 average 75%
Roseworthy AWS 30.6 -0.4 47.6 20 Dec 2019 14.1 -0.1 4.6 7 Dec 2019 39.8 63.5 low 63%
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa Pirsa 29.3 +0.2 44.7 20 Dec 2019 13.4 -0.5 3.7 27 Feb 2020 40.6 73.6 low 55%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 25.0 -0.1 45.2 20 Dec 2019 15.6 0.0 9.6 4 Feb 2020 50.2 58.7 average 86%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 25.2 -0.2 41.9 20 Dec 2019 13.7 0.0 8.3 6 Dec 2019 117.8 86.8 high 136%
Mount Crawford AWS 26.7 0.0 42.0 20 Dec 2019 13.4 -0.1 6.6 7 Dec 2019 85.8 82.0 average 105%
Mount Lofty 24.1 +2.6 39.0 20 Dec 2019 12.4 +0.4 5.7 4 Feb 2020 160.4 128.7 average 125%
Noarlunga 27.5 -0.2 43.4 19 Dec 2019 16.6 +0.1 8.8 7 Dec 2019 65.2 56.7 average 115%
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 23.3 +0.3 40.3 20 Dec 2019 13.2 -0.1 7.1 7 Dec 2019 88.4 94.8 average 93%
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 24.4 -0.1 44.2 20 Dec 2019 13.7 -0.4 7.4 8 Dec 2019 90.0 73.6 average 122%
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 31.8 +0.6 47.3 20 Dec 2019 14.9 +0.7 7.4 5 Dec 2019 35.8 61.0 average 59%
Renmark Aero 32.4 -0.3 48.6 20 Dec 2019 15.7 +0.1 8.1 24 Jan 2020 28.2 60.7 low 46%
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 29.4 +0.8 44.0 20 Dec 2019 14.1 +0.5 6.9 7 Dec 2019 43.6 71.0 average 61%
Meningie 26.1 +0.3 43.1 30 Jan 2020 14.5 +0.8 7.1 4 Feb 2020 57.6 59.6 average 97%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 29.5 -0.3 48.1 20 Dec 2019 14.0 +0.2 5.4 5 Dec 2019 44.4 61.6 average 72%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 27.0 -0.3 45.9 20 Dec 2019 14.2 +0.1 7.6 4 Feb 2020 66.4 63.2 high 105%
Murray Mallee (district 25A)
Karoonda 30.2 -0.4 47.6 20 Dec 2019 13.7 -0.1 7.1 7 Dec 2019 75.8 63.0 high 120%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 29.6 +0.4 47.8 20 Dec 2019 12.8 0.0 4.8 7 Dec 2019 41.3 65.9 low 63%
Keith (Munkora) 29.9 -0.2 49.2 20 Dec 2019 11.7 +0.1 1.2 7 Dec 2019 63.6 65.3 average 97%
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 31.2 +0.1 48.4 20 Dec 2019 13.4 0.0 4.2 7 Dec 2019 74.0 67.1 average 110%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 23.7 -0.4 40.1 20 Dec 2019 13.4 +0.1 7.3 22 Dec 2019 55.0 57.5 average 96%
Coonawarra 26.9 +0.2 45.8 20 Dec 2019 11.9 +0.7 2.8 7 Dec 2019 62.6 84.8 low 74%
Mount Gambier Aero 25.2 +0.6 45.9 20 Dec 2019 11.7 +0.7 4.2 22 Dec 2019 127.2 92.2 high 138%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 28.5 -0.4 47.7 20 Dec 2019 11.5 +0.3 3.2 22 Dec 2019 44.4 77.1 low 58%
Padthaway South 28.1 -0.2 46.1 20 Dec 2019 12.1 +0.2 3.8 17 Jan 2020 68.2 71.9 average 95%
Robe Airfield 23.8 -0.2 43.3 20 Dec 2019 12.6 0.0 6.2 4 Feb 2020 66.4 74.7 average 89%

Notes

The Seasonal climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each 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 9 am on Monday 2 March 2020. 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.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries