ORANGE is on track to record one of its driest years on record, with September’s rainfall figures continuing the nine-month trend of almost bone dry rain gauges.
According to weatherzone.com.au, last month the city received just 30.4 millimetres of rain, which fell across eight days.
Incredibly, 20.2 millimetres of that fell on a single day, Thursday, September 14.
The 30-day figure is well down on the month’s 1996-2016 average of 83.9 millimetres, although the optimists may point out it is a vast improvement on the city’s 127-year low mark: the eight millimetres that fell in September, 2007.
The continuing 2017 dry spell comes on the back of one of the wettest years in the city’s history.
In 2016 the city was drenched by 1260.4 millimetres of rain, almost 400 millimetres more than the annual average.
The calendar year record for the most rain in Orange was set in 1950, when an incredible 1666 millilitres was drained from the gauges.
The statistics show September was also hotter than typical, with the average maximum temperature of 15.9 degrees more than a degree warmer than the 20-year average.
The hottest day of the month was Saturday, August 23, when the mercury spiked at an unseasonable 26.8 degrees, the highest September mark in the past 20 years.
Looking ahead, the picture isn’t much better.
THE GREAT DRY CONTINUES ...
The lack of rain in 2017:
- January-September, 2017: 337.6 millimetres
- January-September, 1996 to 2016 average: 647.9 millimetres
The Bureau of Meteorology has no good news to report with their predictions for the October-to-December period.
In that three-month stretch Orange is predicted to receive between 100-200 millimetres of rain.
“The October to December outlook shows an equal chance of wetter or dryer conditions across Australia,” Bureau of Meteorology Senior Climatologist Dr Lynette Bettio said.
“We are also likely to see a continuation of warmer daytime temperatures for October to December.”
The story No relief from 2017’s dry spell: September’s rain down and temperatures up first appeared on Central Western Daily.