Perth soaking in wettest start to winter in six years

30 Jun, 2011 05:41 AM
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About 100mm of rain in the past week has given Perth its wettest start to winter in six years, according to Weatherzone.

It's also the first time in six years that Perth has had a week as wet as this one. Almost exactly six years ago, there was a week in which 151mm of rain fell. In that June, 251mm was recorded during the month.

For this month as a whole, about 170mm has been recorded, making it the wettest month in about three years. In July 2008, Perth gained 179mm.

Despite all of this rain, the city is struggling to achieve its long-term monthly average of 176mm.

"A few brief showers this afternoon, overnight and in the morning may take the monthly total above average, but only just. This month officially ends at 9am on the last day of the month, as far as rainfall is concerned. Showers will increase during the morning but the heaviest are likely to arrive too late to be included in June's monthly total," Weatherzone meteorologist Brett Dutschke said.

Nevertheless, the wettest week in six years will have some effect on Perth's dams, which are at their lowest level in four years, only about 20% of capacity.

"A reason for this month being so wet can be put down to warmer than normal waters surrounding southwest Western Australia. Apart from the extra moisture these warm waters provide, they also allow low pressure systems and cold fronts to maintain their strength for longer," Dutschke said.

"The warmer than normal waters have also lead to this month being the warmest June in seven years."

Nights were particularly warm for this time of year, the overnight minimums averaging 10 degrees, one-and-a-half degrees warmer than normal and the warmest for June in seven years.

In terms of daytime temperatures it was the warmest June since 2008, when maximums averaged 19.7 degrees. The city averaged a maximum temperature of about 19.5 degrees this month, about half a degree warmer than the long-term norm. These warmer than normal days came with help from an extra half an hour of sunshine per day compared to normal.

When nighttime and daytime temperatures are combined, it turned out to be the warmest June in seven years, averaging just under 15 degrees.

"Looking ahead to the rest of winter, relatively warm waters should allow rainfall and temperatures to stay near-average. We will get our cold and dry spells but overall, the rest of winter is looking near-average," Dutschke said.

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