Sydney’s wettest, coldest start to winter in 23 years

Sydney has had its wettest, coldest and gloomiest first weekend of winter in 23 years.

SMH | Jun 4, 2012

This weekend, the city had more than 30mm of rain and the maximum temperature was only 16.7 degrees, Weatherzone meteorologist Brett Dutschke said.

This makes it the wettest and coldest opening weekend of winter since 1989. In that year, winter’s first weekend was dealt a 16-degree maximum and more than 50mm of rain.

There was a colder opening weekend in 1995 with a maximum temperature of only 15.6 degrees. But that was a drier weekend with only 25mm recorded.

“A low pressure trough formed over the interior a few days ago, bringing with it a lot of moisture, cloud and rain to most of eastern Australia, including Sydney. This rain cloud has let in very little sunshine, so daytime has not been too different from night,” Mr Dutschke said.

In fact, Sydney was slightly warmer at midnight than at midday, 15.2 degrees compared with 14.8. Nearly all weekend it was only about 15 degrees. On average at this time of year the daytime maximum temperature is 18 degrees.

“This rain and much of the cloud will clear by Monday morning, giving the east coast, including Sydney, a much brighter day,” Mr Dutschke said.

“But don’t let the clearer skies fool you, we’re in for some very windy and wet weather, as early as Tuesday. It’ll be windy enough to bring down trees, possibly power lines. Rain will be heavy for a few hours, bringing potentially 20 to 40mm to most suburbs.

“A low will form offshore and intensify as cold air comes across from the west. This intensification will cause wind to become very strong and heavy rain to develop, starting from eastern Victoria on Monday night and heading north along the NSW coast during Tuesday.”

An easing of wind and showers will occur during Wednesday as the low-pressure system weakens and heads across the Tasman Sea.

However, southerly winds right through to next weekend will keep most of NSW, including Sydney, colder than average. Nights will become noticeably colder.

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