Zack Harvey-Roach, 3, of Casino, played it smart yesterday and cooled off in Casino pool as the mercury hit 41 degrees. Mel McMillan
Zack Harvey-Roach, 3, of Casino, played it smart yesterday and cooled off in Casino pool as the mercury hit 41 degrees. Mel McMillan

Weekend hotting up

IF YOU thought yesterday was hot, wait until the weekend, when temperatures are expected to rise by as much as five degrees.

Yesterday, across the Northern Rivers, where temperatures as high as 41 degrees were recorded, people flocked to beaches, public pools and creeks to escape the heat.

“It’s pretty hot in Casino,” said Bruce Harvey, who was cooling off at the town’s pool yesterday with his three-year-old son Zack.

According to Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Sarah Hicks, the worst is yet to come.

A very high pressure system, which saw South Australia reach its hottest day on record earlier this month, is expected to reach northern NSW on Thursday.

Temperatures could be very high, Ms Hicks said, well above the November average of 28.2 degrees.

“This is looking like the warmest year ever on record,” she said.

The hottest November day on record in northern NSW was on November 19, 1968 when the mercury hit 42.2 degrees.

Ms Hicks said temperatures in Australia had been on the rise since 1950.

“Temperatures are now about one degree warmer,” she said.

Yesterday, the fire danger rating was ‘very high’ with an index of 35 – well above predictions.

Humidity was lower than expected and the winds were higher, Superintendent Boyd Townsend of the Rural Fire Service said.

And while Monday is expected to bring a cool change, this could be bad news for firefighters.

“There is always the risk of lightning strikes starting fires in remote areas,” Supt Townsend said.

Yesterday, fires caused by lightning were burning in bushland near Tenterfield.

The high temperatures recorded around the region yesterday included Casino, on 41 degrees and Ballina and Lismore, both 38.

Health authorities are advising people to stay hydrated and out of the sun over the coming days.



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