Tasmania in winter 2018: wet in the west, dry in the east, warm for winter

Frequent westerly winds during July and August brought above-average rain to western Tasmania, but it was relatively dry on the East Coast. Temperatures were above average across the State.

Wet in the west, dry in the east

  • Westerly winds and cold fronts were common, especially during July and August
  • Rainfall was above average in western and central Tasmania and parts of the northeast, with some areas in the western highlands recording very much above average totals
  • Derwent Bridge had its wettest winter on record with 690.8 mm
  • Rainfall was below average for much of the East Coast
  • Mount Read in the western highlands had total rainfall of 1426 mm for winter, whilst Grindstone Point on the East Coast had only 72.8 mm
  • Tasmania's total winter rainfall was 22.5 % above average - considerably wetter than winter 2017 but much drier than winter 2016

Mild for winter

  • It was a relatively mild winter across Tasmania, with the State's mean temperature 0.26 °C above average; considerably warmer than winter 2017 but cooler than winter 2016
  • Maximum temperatures were above average in June and July, but average in August; the State's winter mean maximum temperature was 0.28 °C above average
  • Especially in the east, there were fewer particularly cold days than is usual for the time of year
  • Most areas had their coldest day of winter in the second half of August
  • Minimum temperatures were close to average in June, above average in July and just below average in August; overall the State's winter mean minimum temperature was 0.24 °C above average
  • Several locations recorded their lowest temperatures in the second half of August, with Mount Read and King Island both recorded their lowest temperature on record

Strong winds, high tides and flooding

  • Strong and gusty winds associated with cold fronts and low pressure systems caused damage several times during winter, especially during July and August
  • Exposed locations recorded some very strong gusts: Winds on Hogan Island reached 150 km/h on 29 July and 163 km/h at Maatsuyker Island on 15 August
  • Low atmospheric pressure and strong onshore winds, coupled with high astronomical tides, caused localised inundation during August
  • Upper soil layers in many areas became very wet as winter progressed, meaning rainfall from cold fronts frequently led to river rises and minor flooding in several catchments many times during July and August

Hobart (Ellerslie Road)

  • Total rainfall for Hobart (Ellerslie Road) was 142.8 mm, which is 89% of the long-term average of 159.6 mm
  • Rain was recorded on 46 days, close to the winter average of 45 days
  • The mean daily maximum temperature for Hobart (Ellerslie Road) was 13.3 °C, which is 1.0 °C above the long-term average of 12.3 °C. The warmest day was 17.9 °C on 17 Jul, and the coolest day was on 19 Aug when the temperature reached 9.0 °C
  • Hobart had only 8 days where the temperature did not reach 10 °C compared to a long-term winter average of about 18 such cold days
  • The mean daily minimum temperature for Hobart (Ellerslie Road) was 5.5 °C, which is 0.5 °C above the long-term average of 5.0 °C. The coldest morning was 0.6 °C on 20 Aug, and the warmest morning was on 4 Jul when the minimum temperature was 10.8 °C
  • The minimum temperature dropped below 2.0 °C on 3 days, well below the winter average of 11 days

Further information

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Extremes in winter 2018
Hottest day19.8 °C at Friendly Beaches on 10 Aug
Warmest days on average14.4 °C at Friendly Beaches
Coolest days on average 3.2 °C at kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Coldest day-3.1 °C at kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) on 27 Aug
Coldest night-8.4 °C at Liawenee on 23 Aug
Coolest nights on average-1.6 °C at Liawenee
Warmest nights on average8.8 °C at Hogan Island
Warmest night13.7 °C at Hogan Island on 8 Jun
Warmest on average overall11.1 °C at Hogan Island
Coolest on average overall1.1 °C at kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle)
Wettest overall1426.0 mm at Mount Read
Driest overall72.8 mm at Grindstone Point
Wettest day83.4 mm at Cradle Mountain Visitors Centre on 19 Jul
Strongest wind gust163 km/h at Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse on 15 Aug

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 winter total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
Derwent Bridge 690.8 671.8 in 2002 20 459.9




Record lowest winter temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
winter
King Island Airport -0.1 on 29 Aug 0.0 on 26 Aug 2006 24 7.8
Mount Read -5.3 on 28 Aug -5.2 on 21 Jun 2007 21 0.4



Summary statistics for winter 2018
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
winter
2018
Diff
from
average
Highest for
winter
2018
Mean for
winter
2018
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
winter
2018
Total for
winter
2018
Average
for
winter
Rank of
winter
2018
Fraction of
winter
average
Northern (district 91)
Cape Grim 12.6   15.5 3 Aug 8.2   2.5 28 Aug 394.2
Devonport Airport 13.4 +0.3 16.6 7 Jun 5.0 +0.1 -0.8 29 Aug 274.6 265.6 average 103%
Launceston (Ti Tree Bend) 13.5 +0.3 16.6 7 Jun 2.7 -0.2 -2.6 10 Jul 233.5 232.8 average 100%
Launceston Airport 12.1 -0.2 15.3 7 Jun 2.1 -0.4 -4.3 13 Jul 220.4 202.7 average 109%
Low Head 13.0 -0.1 16.0 7 Jun 7.3 +0.1 1.6 20 Aug 216.2 228.9 average 94%
Luncheon Hill (Forestry) 10.7 -0.3 15.1 24 Aug 5.2 0.0 0.3 27 Aug 720.6 568.9 high 127%
Marrawah 12.9 +0.2 15.8 8 Jun 7.3 +0.2 0.5 28 Aug 525.0 396.0 v high 133%
Scottsdale (West Minstone Road) 12.1 -0.3 14.8 4 Jun 3.9 0.0 -1.3 21 Jul 362.0 342.0 average 106%
Sheffield School Farm 11.1 -0.3 14.9 4 Jun 3.3 -0.3 -2.3 29 Aug 449.2 387.3 average 116%
Smithton Aerodrome 13.5 0.0 15.9 6 Jun 4.5 -0.4 -3.1 29 Aug 476.6 340.1 high 140%
Wynyard Airport 13.3 +0.2 16.9 7 Jun 3.7 -0.1 -2.9 28 Aug 400.8 357.4 average 112%
East Coast (district 92)
Fingal (Legge Street) 12.9 +0.2 17.8 25 Aug 1.4 +0.5 -4.0 6 Jun 114.0 180.1 low 63%
Friendly Beaches 14.4 +0.2 19.8 10 Aug 6.1 +0.1 -0.3 30 Aug 131.4 153.3 average 86%
larapuna (Eddystone Point) 14.1 +0.7 16.9 7 Jun 7.5 +0.3 1.1 20 Aug 166.6 220.2 low 76%
Maria Island (Point Lesueur) 13.0 -0.1 17.6 8 Jun 7.8 +0.2 3.7 30 Aug 85.8 117.8 low 73%
Orford (Aubin Court) 13.5 0.0 18.8 14 Aug 4.4 +0.4 -1.6 30 Aug 140.4 170.8 average 82%
St Helens Aerodrome 14.0 0.0 17.8 7 Jun 5.3 +0.1 0.1 30 Aug 130.4 165.2 average 79%
Swan Island 13.6 0.0 17.0 7 Jun 8.5 -0.2 2.6 20 Aug 187.6 191.2 average 98%
Swansea (Francis Street) 14.0   18.5 25 Aug 4.6   -1.8 30 Aug 104.4
Midlands (district 93)
Ross (The Boulevards) 11.7 -0.1 15.4 7 Jun 1.5 -0.3 -5.3 6 Jun 156.4 127.1 average 123%
Southeast (district 94)
Campania (Kincora) 13.6 0.0 18.4 25 Aug 3.9 +0.2 -1.9 30 Aug 123.6 125.2 average 99%
Cape Bruny (Cape Bruny) 12.6 +0.1 17.8 10 Aug 6.7 -0.1 3.0 30 Aug 224.0 239.0 average 94%
Cape Bruny Lighthouse 12.4 +0.8 17.7 10 Aug 7.0 +0.6 1.2 8 Jul 234.0 276.8 average 85%
Dennes Point 12.9   18.0 14 Aug 6.8   2.0 30 Aug 117.6
Dover 12.6 -0.1 18.7 10 Aug 3.5 -0.3 -1.0 20 Aug 298.8 257.7 high 116%
Dunalley (Stroud Point) 13.0   18.0 10 Aug 6.7   1.7 15 Jul 104.4
Grove (Research Station) 12.8 +0.1 17.3 7 Jun 2.7 +0.5 -2.3 2 Aug 199.6 213.8 average 93%
Hobart (Ellerslie Road) 13.3 +1.0 17.9 17 Jul 5.5 +0.5 0.6 20 Aug 142.8 159.6 average 89%
Hobart Airport 13.4 +0.4 17.6 25 Aug 5.0 +0.5 0.3 30 Aug 101.2 122.1 average 83%
kunanyi (Mount Wellington Pinnacle) 3.2 +0.2 8.8 3 Jun -1.0 +0.3 -5.7 20 Aug 127.2 205.9 low 62%
Maatsuyker Island Lighthouse 11.4 +0.2 16.0 7 Jun 7.3 +0.5 3.3 27 Aug 375.6 370.2 average 101%
Melton Mowbray (North Stockman) 12.0 +0.1 17.0 25 Aug 2.4 +0.2 -4.4 13 Jul 137.0 120.6 average 114%
Tasman Island 11.3 0.0 15.4 25 Aug 7.0 +0.2 1.8 27 Aug 231.0 210.0 high 110%
Tunnack Fire Station 10.2 +0.2 14.7 14 Aug     -4.2 2 Aug 90.8 164.5 low 55%
Derwent Valley (district 95)
Bushy Park (Bushy Park Estates) 12.7 +0.8 18.2 25 Aug 1.6 -0.3 -3.1 30 Aug 138.4 151.8 average 91%
Maydena Post Office 10.8 -0.3 16.3 10 Aug 2.6 +0.1 -2.0 28 Aug 468.5 371.0 high 126%
Ouse Fire Station 12.1 -0.3 17.6 25 Aug 1.2 -0.3 -4.4 30 Aug 212.4 163.7 high 130%
Central Plateau (district 96)
Butlers Gorge 8.3 +0.7 13.1 7 Jun 0.3 +0.3 -5.8 30 Aug 762.6 512.0 v high 149%
Liawenee 6.1 -0.1 13.2 25 Aug -1.6 -0.3 -8.4 23 Aug 427.4 350.6 high 122%
West Coast (district 97)
Cape Sorell 12.9 +0.8 16.1 7 Jun 7.8 +0.5 2.4 28 Aug 530.8 445.6 high 119%
Hartz Mountain (Keoghs Pimple) 6.3 -0.1 12.7 3 Jun 1.5 -0.1 -2.4 20 Aug 422.0 328.6 high 128%
Low Rocky Point 12.7   17.1 7 Jun 7.1   0.9 29 Aug 577.0 428.2 high 135%
Mount Read 3.7 -0.4 8.6 3 Jun 0.2 -0.2 -5.3 28 Aug 1426.0 1123.1 high 127%
Scotts Peak Dam 9.7 0.0 14.4 30 Aug 3.5 0.0 -0.6 28 Aug 839.4 623.7 v high 135%
Strahan Aerodrome 12.9 +0.3 17.2 3 Aug 5.7 +0.2 -2.5 29 Aug 688.2 516.8 high 133%
Warra 9.1 0.0 14.2 10 Aug 2.1 -0.6 -3.9 30 Aug 760.4 535.3 high 142%
King Island (district 98)
King Island Airport 13.7 +0.1 16.3 6 Jun 7.6 -0.2 -0.1 29 Aug 394.6 329.9 high 120%
Flinders Island (district 99)
Flinders Island Airport 13.8 0.0 18.4 7 Jun 6.5 -0.2 -2.2 30 Aug 208.4 230.6 average 90%
Hogan Island 13.4 +0.1 17.5 10 Aug 8.8 -0.4 5.0 21 Jul 275.4 210.3 high 131%
Note: From 2017, information about Macquarie Island can be found in the climate summary for the Remote Islands and Antarctica

Notes

The Seasonal 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 9 am on Monday 3 September 2018. 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