Intense heatwave conditions are forecast to bake the South East of QLD over the course of the next week with temperatures pushing into the 40’s for some areas and around 7-10ºc above average for December standards. Above image – HSC in-house constructed heat map showing maximum temperatures across the South East Coast for Friday, December 6th.


A surface trough is forecast to become situated between the Coastline and Ranges throughout South Eastern QLD during the upcoming week. Each day, the trough is expected to bounce between the Ranges and Coast, some days it’ll be closer to the Coast and other days closer to the Ranges. The exact positioning of the trough will be vital for who escapes the high-end heating and cops the humidity, and who gets the dry fan forced oven heat. 

While the period of Monday and Tuesday will be above average for even December standards with most areas pushing into the low to mid 30’s. Wednesday through to Saturday is when the real heat kicks in. The trough is expected to become situated extremely close to the Coast during this period and this will allow maximum heating to push as close to the Coast as possible. Areas like the Gold Coast and Redcliffe will be your escapes with these areas being 5-8ºc cooler than even Brisbane or areas 10 minutes Inland from the Coast. 

HSC in-house temperatures forecast for Wednesday December 4th, 2019.


Friday and Saturday are the peak heat days with large portions of Interior South East QLD, Interior Northern Rivers (NENSW) and the Burnett region into Central QLD peaking at over 40ºc. Even places like Brisbane under the influence of Westerly winds will see temperatures into the high 30’s. A cool change should be moving up the NENSW Coast during Saturday and this will enter SEQLD on Sunday. 

These conditions when coupled with gusty winds will lead to elevated fire dangers across the entire week. For places like Gatton, Ipswich, Gayndah, Gympie, Beaudesert – while Summer is usually hot, the December average sits around 32ºc for these places. So temperatures in excess of 37ºc are considered heat-wave thresholds (remembering the term heatwave is purely mathematical and based on forecast vs average, not expectation). For Brisbane who averages 30ºc for December, anything over 35ºc is considered heatwave material. These thresholds are likely to be met during this period.

For Central and Northern QLD, heatwave conditions are likely as well, with temperatures pushing into the mid 40’s towards the end of the week over Central Inland, Northern Inland and North West QLD. We will have a blog dedicated to that over the coming days.

HSC in-house temperatures forecast for Saturday December 7th, 2019.