Heatwave conditions continue in NSW


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NSW is sweltering through another day of heatwave conditions, with temperatures soaring into the 30s across much of the state.

Sydney is headed for a top of 34C on Tuesday after the city recorded its hottest temperature in two years on Monday, nudging 38C in the CBD.

Maximum temperatures are forecast to be about six to 12 degrees above average across eastern parts of NSW, before easing on Wednesday and Thursday.

The blistering conditions sparked more bushfire warnings, with the Bureau of Meteorology forecasting extreme fire danger for the Central Ranges, where a total fire ban is in place, as well as in the Greater Hunter.

“Hot and dry conditions combined with fresh and gusty west to northwesterly winds are elevating fire dangers,” the BOM said on Tuesday.

Isolated thunderstorms are possible in the northeast during the afternoon.

There are 34 fires burning across the state, nine of those out of control, including one in the Central West where Hills End properties came under threat from embers on Monday, but conditions have eased overnight.

Rural Fire Service Commissioner Rob Rogers says the fire load has increased dramatically in the past few years.

“It’s a very different environment than we were at going into that 2019-20 fire season when we were in the back of a four-year drought and there was no grass anywhere,” he told ABC TV on Tuesday.

“It was only bush, so it’s a very different scenario, but the good thing is we’re not into drought, but obviously the bad thing is all that grass fuel, and that’s going to be around for a couple of years.”

Mr Rogers urged people to protect their properties by having a bushfire safety plan.

“Make sure you remove as many combustibles from your house as possible, possibly have a hose that wraps right around the property,” he said.

The BOM says it is not unusual to experience heatwaves during early autumn.

“The bureau’s long-range forecast for autumn indicates it is likely to be drier and warmer than usual for much of Australia,” the bureau said.

BOM forecaster Sarah Scully said a “much cooler” air mass would arrive over the state on Wednesday, bringing much-needed relief.

“The west, northwesterly winds are notorious for bringing really hot conditions over eastern NSW, and that’s because the air is brought from over the inland continent and it’s really hot and generally dry,” Ms Scully said.

“As well as that, west, northwesterly winds prevent or delay the sea breeze from bringing relief to coastal communities.”

A severe weather warning remains for damaging winds in parts of the South Coast, Southern Tablelands, Snowy Mountains, Canberra and South West Slopes.


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