Brisbane’s BOM forecast shows temperatures to remain cool for days after the ‘very unusual’ start to summer

Residents who reached for their sweaters and scarves for a “very unusual” start to summer in south-east Queensland and east New South Wales could be gearing up for days.

The start of the new season on Thursday was accompanied by unusually cool weather as temperatures fell well below average in what forecasters are calling the “climate change effect”.

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“It has been a very unusual first day of summer so far. Throughout south-east Queensland we are seeing daily temperatures that only reach the mid to high teens (in degrees),” said Pieter Claassen, forecaster for the Bureau of Meteorology.

“And that’s really on track with the coldest temperatures we’ve ever experienced in south-east Queensland in December.

“Broadly speaking, we are eight to 14 degrees below average in the entire region. So some very, very cool temperatures are forecast today.”

Meteorologists will be reaching for the record books Friday morning to see how December 1, 2022 compares to previous years.

Brisbane City peaked at just 17.6 degrees while Toowoomba was one of the coldest places with a maximum of 14.6 degrees. The Queensland capital was expected to hit about 23 degrees on Friday, still below average.

The temperature in the city of Brisbane stayed below 18 degrees on Thursday. Recognition: 7NEWS

Claassen believes temperatures in areas of the southeast will be “close to,” if not near, record lows.

“The reason for this is that we have a lot of cloud cover and we have quite a lot of precipitation,” he said.

“And underneath it all, cool and dry southeast winds blow.

“When that rain falls in those dry winds, we actually get what we like to think of as an air conditioning effect, where the rain evaporates in the dry winds, taking more heat from the environment and making things cooler and cooler.”

He said the cool weather may continue for another week.

“In the coming days we will still see temperatures well below average in south-east Queensland,” said Claassen.

“But they will go up a few degrees every day.

“If you’ve been pining for some warmer weather then we’re touching 30 degrees again next week around Wednesday.”

There is still a risk of flooding

Meanwhile, inland NSW and Northern Rivers communities are being told to prepare for severe storms battering the region.

Strong winds and isolated falls of between 50 and 100mm are forecast for Thursday night and through Friday.

Widespread river flooding is not expected, but sudden downpours could bring localized flash flooding and risks from falling trees.

“Our concern isn’t river flooding, but we are concerned there will be flash flooding due to the rains we are currently experiencing,” said Greg Swindells, Chief Superintendent of NSW SES.

With the soil already saturated from several weeks of rain, flash flooding and falling trees are more likely.

Emergency services continue to deal with major flooding along the Lachlan River in Condobolin and Euabalong in the central west of the state.

Record flooding is still occurring in Hillston, with more surges possible over the weekend.

Further increases are also predicted for Moulamein on the Edward River as access roads in and out of town are closed and residents are urged to take shelter on the spot.

“NSW SES is closely monitoring weather conditions and we have moved additional resources to key areas in northern NSW should the need arise,” said Nicole Hogan, Deputy Commissioner of NSW SES.

“The community is urged to prepare, including securing loose items outdoors, removing vehicles from under trees and ensuring your gutters are clear.”

Nine SES emergency alerts and 43 watch and action commands remain.

In the 24 hours to Thursday afternoon, the SES responded to 76 requests for help and conducted two rescue operations.

– With AAP

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James Brien

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