Victoria in 2018: drier and warmer than average

Victorian rainfall in 2018 was below average, with all months except December being drier than average. Both mean maximum and minimum temperatures were above average overall.

The Australian annual climate statement provides a comprehensive summary of Australia's climate during 2018. Information about changes and long-term trends in Australia's climate can be found in State of the Climate 2018.

Drier than average across Victoria

  • Rainfall in Victoria during 2018 was about 25% below average, the lowest since 2006
  • The year was much drier than 2017 for the State as a whole
  • Statewide rainfall was below average in all months except December, when it was above average
  • Gippsland, Mallee and North districts had below average rainfall in most months; consequently, most areas in these districts had annual rainfall totals in the driest 10 per cent of records
  • Large areas of Victoria had April rainfall that was very much below average, while in parts of East Gippsland it was lowest on record; statewide it was the driest April since 1997
  • Victoria's rainfall in September was nearly 65% below average (the second-driest September on record) and in October it was 51% below average, resulting in the State's ninth-driest spring on record
  • The middle of December saw several very wet days due to a slow-moving low pressure trough which brought moisture from the tropics; it subsequently deepened into a low pressure system over central parts of the State
  • The highest daily rainfall total during the year, 134.0 mm, was recorded at Bloomfield Park on 13 December
  • Birchip and Charlton had their highest daily rainfall on record on 14 December
  • The wettest place in Victoria was Falls Creek (Rocky Valley), where 2132.4 mm was recorded in 2018; in contrast, Mildura Airport had only 135.0 mm during the year
  • Some sites had their lowest total rainfall on record, or their lowest total rainfall since at least 1994

Third-warmest year on record

  • 2018 was Victoria's third-warmest year on record overall, with the State's mean temperature 1.14 °C above average
  • All of Victoria had much warmer than average maximum temperatures, with parts of the southeast and northwest warmest on record
  • Many sites had their highest annual mean daily maximum temperature on record
  • The State's mean maximum temperatures was 1.44 °C warmer than average and highest on record
  • The State's mean minimum temperature was 0.83 °C warmer than average, the sixth-warmest on record
  • Nights were warmer than average in most of Victoria, and very much above average in the large areas in the south and east of the State, as well as in the smaller area in the northwest
  • January was Victoria's overall fourth-warmest January on record, and the warmest since 2006, contributing to Victoria having its warmest summer since 2000-2001
  • The highest daytime temperature in Victoria in 2018, 46.4 °C, was recorded at Walpeup Research on 19 January
  • Minimum temperatures were also very warm in January, when Victoria had its warmest night during the year: a minimum temperature of 31.4 °C was recorded at Mildura Airport on the 29th
  • Walpeup research, Wonthaggi and Rhyll had their warmest night (highest daily minimum temperature) on record also on 29 January
  • In contrast, clear skies and cold, dry air over Victoria towards the end of August resulted in cooler than average night-time temperatures across large areas of the State
  • The coldest daytime and night-time temperatures recorded in Victoria during the year were −5.4 °C and −9.8 °C at Mount Hotham on 27 and 29 August respectively
  • Mount Nowa Nowa and Falls Creek had their record lowest temperatures on 28 and 29 August
  • September nights in Victoria were cooler than in any September since 1994, while in December mean night-time temperatures were the highest December temperatures on record

Further information

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Extremes in 2018
Hottest day 46.4 °C at Walpeup Research on 19 Jan
Warmest days on average 25.7 °C at Mildura Airport
Coolest days on average 9.7 °C at Falls Creek
Coldest day -5.4 °C at Mount Hotham on 27 Aug
Coldest night -9.8 °C at Mount Hotham on 29 Aug
Coolest nights on average 2.9 °C at Falls Creek
Warmest nights on average 12.7 °C at Wilsons Promontory Lighthouse
Warmest night 31.4 °C at Mildura Airport on 29 Jan
Warmest on average overall 18.4 °C at Mildura Airport
Coolest on average overall 6.3 °C at Falls Creek
Wettest overall 2132.4 mm at Falls Creek (Rocky Valley)
Driest overall 135.0 mm at Mildura Airport
Wettest day 134.0 mm at Bloomfield Park (Everton) on 13 Dec
Strongest wind gust 146 km/h at Wilsons Promontory Lighthouse on 8 Jul
146 km/h at Wilsons Promontory Lighthouse on 20 Jul

Maps
ObservedAnomalyDecile rank
Total
rainfall
Map of Rainfall totals Map of Percentage of normal rainfall Map of Rainfall deciles
Mean
daily
maximum
temperatures
Map of Mean maximum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature
Mean
daily
minimum
temperatures
Map of Mean minimum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean minimum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature

Click on a map to show it full size in a pop-up window


Monthly maps
Rainfall rankMaximum temperature rankMinimum temperature rank
January Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
February Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
March Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
April Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
May Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
June Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
July Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
August Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
September Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
October Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
November Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature
December Map of Rainfall deciles Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature

Click on a map to show it full size in a pop-up window


Record highest daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Birchip (Woodlands) 130.2 on 14 Dec 119.4 on 14 Dec 1961 128
Charlton (Donald St) 93.0 on 14 Dec 77.0 on 19 Feb 1973 62
Birchip Cropping Group 127.2 on 14 Dec 84.8 on 20 Feb 1973 46



Record lowest annual total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Erica (Parkers Corner) 746.4 783.2 in 2006 53 1125.1
Lake Tyers 429.0 455.0 in 1979 46 818.3
Nicholson Winery 443.8 471.0 in 2009 27 695.6
Mount Nowa Nowa 494.4 539.0 in 2017 22 815.4

Lowest annual total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Annual
average
Murrayville 172.4 159.0 in 1982 325.5
Stratford 361.9 350.2 in 1972* 614.5
Briagolong 366.2 309.7 in 1972* 658.0
Caniambo 349.4 293.2 in 1994* 526.5

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a lower value has gone unreported




Record highest annual mean daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Rutherglen Research 23.8 23.4 in 2006 102 21.8
Longerenong 23.2 = 23.2 in 2014 73 21.5
East Sale 21.0 20.9 in 2017 72 19.7
Walpeup Research 25.3 25.0 in 2014 67 23.2
Castlemaine Prison 21.1 = 21.1 in 2014 46 19.9
Point Hicks (Lighthouse) 20.5 20.1 in 2013 46 19.1
Strathbogie 19.7 = 19.7 in 2014 39 18.6
Bairnsdale Airport 21.3 = 21.3 in 2009 34 20.3
Morwell (Latrobe Valley Airport) 21.2 = 21.2 in 2007 33 20.1
Aireys Inlet 19.5 19.3 in 2014 26 18.4
Redesdale 22.4 22.2 in 2014 24 20.5
Combienbar AWS 19.4 19.3 in 2009 23 18.2
Yarrawonga 24.3 24.1 in 2006 23 23.0
Avalon Airport 21.3 = 21.3 in 2014 22 20.4
Mount Nowa Nowa 20.0 19.8 in 2013 22 19.0
Shepparton Airport 23.4 = 23.4 in 2007 21 22.4
Swan Hill Aerodrome 25.1 25.0 in 2014 21 23.9

Highest annual mean daily maximum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
higher
Annual
average
Echuca Aerodrome 24.1 24.5 in 1914* 22.3
Kerang 24.7 24.9 in 1914* 22.9

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a higher value has gone unreported




Record highest daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Walpeup Research 30.1 on 29 Jan 29.5 on 12 Dec 1975 52 9.9
Wonthaggi 26.5 on 29 Jan 25.0 on 29 Jan 2009 51 9.7
Rhyll 25.6 on 29 Jan 24.8 on 21 Jan 1997 28 11.8
Mallacoota 24.0 on 28 Jan = 24.0 on 31 Dec 2005 26 10.9



Record lowest temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
Falls Creek -9.6 on 29 Aug -9.3 on 11 Aug 2005 29 2.6
Mount Nowa Nowa 0.6 on 28 Aug = 0.6 on 10 Jul 1997 24 10.0



Record highest annual mean temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Annual
average
East Sale 14.8 = 14.8 in 2016 72 13.9
Mildura Airport 18.4 = 18.4 in 2014 71 17.1
Walpeup Research 17.9 = 17.9 in 2014 65 16.6
Bairnsdale Airport 15.0 = 15.0 in 2014 34 14.3
Mount Moornapa 14.8 = 14.8 in 2017 24 13.9
Redesdale 14.9 = 14.9 in 2014 24 13.9
Combienbar AWS 14.4 = 14.4 in 2007 23 13.6
Mount Nowa Nowa 15.2 15.1 in 2013 22 14.5
Swan Hill Aerodrome 17.4 = 17.4 in 2014 21 16.6



Summary statistics for 2018
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean
for
2018
Diff
from
average
Highest
for
2018
Mean
for
2018
Diff
from
average
Lowest
for
2018
Total
for
2018
Average
annual
total
Rank
of
2018
Fraction
of annual
average
North Mallee (district 76)
Mildura Airport 25.7 +1.8 45.1 20 Jan 11.1 +0.7 -2.1 22 Jun 135.0 288.2 v low 47%
Ouyen (Post Office)     44.2 6 Jan 10.4 +0.7 -1.2 23 Jun 194.2 329.6 v low 59%
Walpeup Research 25.3 +2.1 46.4 19 Jan 10.5 +0.6 -0.8 16 Sep
South Mallee (district 77)
Hopetoun Airport 24.8 +0.8 46.0 19 Jan 8.9 +0.1 -3.7 20 Aug 269.6 299.4 average 90%
Swan Hill Aerodrome 25.1 +1.2 45.6 20 Jan 9.7 +0.4 -3.0 29 Aug
North Wimmera (district 78)
Nhill Aerodrome 22.8 +0.2 44.2 19 Jan 8.9 +0.2 -1.2 25 Sep 338.4 335.9 average 101%
Warracknabeal Museum 23.5 +1.1 44.0 6 Jan 8.8 +0.1 -2.8 14 Jul 332.9 392.0 average 85%
South Wimmera (district 79)
Edenhope Airport 21.4 +0.3 43.0 19 Jan 8.9 +0.1 -2.1 13 Jul 476.4 496.7 average 96%
Horsham Aerodrome 22.8 +0.6 45.1 19 Jan 7.5 +0.2 -3.0 21 Jun 256.4 368.3 low 70%
Kanagulk 21.3 +0.3 44.2 19 Jan 8.0 -0.1 -3.5 14 Jul 498.4 474.7 average 105%
Longerenong 23.2 +1.7 45.9 19 Jan 8.0 +0.1 -3.8 16 Sep
Pyrenees (Ben Nevis) 16.8 +1.0 40.0 19 Jan 7.5 +0.3 -1.1 29 Sep
Stawell Aerodrome 21.3 +0.7 43.6 19 Jan 8.7 +0.2 -1.9 29 Aug 378.6 473.0 low 80%
Lower North (district 80)
Charlton 24.0 +0.8 44.7 19 Jan 8.8 -0.2 -4.2 29 Aug 306.6 361.4 average 85%
Echuca Aerodrome 24.1 +1.8 44.1 20 Jan 9.3 0.0 -3.1 29 Aug 276.3 426.5 low 65%
Kerang 24.7 +1.8 44.7 20 Jan 10.1 +0.7 -1.8 14 Jul 224.4 372.9 v low 60%
Kyabram 23.6 +1.9 43.7 20 Jan 9.1 +0.5 -3.8 29 Aug 309.6 446.7 low 69%
Upper North (district 81)
Shepparton Airport 23.4 +1.0 43.4 20 Jan 9.2 +0.5 -3.0 14 Jul 266.4 442.0 low 60%
Tatura Inst Sustainable Ag 22.7 +1.3 42.7 20 Jan 9.0 +0.6 -4.1 29 Aug 318.4 481.2 low 66%
Yarrawonga 24.3 +1.3 43.4 21 Jan 9.0 0.0 -5.2 29 Aug 336.2 469.5 low 72%
Lower Northeast (district 82)
Benalla Airport 23.2 +0.8 42.9 20 Jan 8.3 -0.3 -4.0 14 Jul 400.6 616.5 v low 65%
Corryong Airport 22.4 +0.6 41.5 7 Jan 6.5 -0.3 -4.7 26 Jun 686.6 809.0 average 85%
Dartmouth Reservoir 21.2 +0.6 39.0 20 Jan     -3.4 23 Jul 756.0 1008.7 v low 75%
Rutherglen Research 23.8 +2.0 43.2 21 Jan 7.4 +0.1 -5.7 28 Aug 379.6 584.8 low 65%
Strathbogie 19.7 +1.1 38.9 20 Jan 6.1 -0.1 -4.6 14 Jul 677.2 962.5 low 70%
Wangaratta Aero 23.4 +1.2 42.4 20 Jan 7.2 -0.4 -4.6 14 Jul
Upper Northeast (district 83)
Falls Creek 9.7 +0.3 26.0 20 Jan 2.9 +0.3 -9.6 29 Aug
Mount Buller 9.8 +0.5 26.7 20 Jan 3.2 +0.4 -8.2 28 Aug 1399.4 1552.3 low 90%
Omeo 19.4 +0.7 38.1 20 Jan 5.6 0.0 -5.5 29 Aug
East Gippsland (district 84)
Combienbar AWS 19.4 +1.2 38.5 19 Jan 9.4 +0.4 -0.1 28 Aug
Gabo Island Lighthouse 19.1 +1.2 36.5 12 Apr     5.1 23 Jul 691.8 939.0 v low 74%
Mallacoota 20.3 +0.8 38.2 24 Feb 11.0 +0.1 0.5 7 Aug 758.6 933.9 low 81%
Mount Nowa Nowa 20.0 +1.0 41.6 19 Jan 10.4 +0.4 0.6 28 Aug 494.4 815.4 lowest 61%
Orbost 21.4 +1.0 40.8 19 Jan 10.2 +0.2 0.1 30 Aug
Point Hicks (Lighthouse) 20.5 +1.4 36.8 19 Jan     3.5 1 Oct 799.9 963.9 average 83%
West Gippsland (district 85)
Bairnsdale Airport 21.3 +1.0 42.1 19 Jan 8.6 +0.3 -2.5 30 Aug 420.2 643.4 v low 65%
Corner Inlet (Yanakie) 18.9   39.3 6 Jan 10.1   -0.3 29 Aug 778.6
East Sale 21.0 +1.3 40.9 19 Jan 8.6 +0.4 -4.2 30 Aug 343.6 592.6 v low 58%
East Sale Airport 21.4   41.9 19 Jan 8.9   -3.8 30 Aug 352.6
Morwell (Latrobe Valley Airport) 21.2 +1.1 40.6 27 Dec 8.4 +0.1 -3.2 23 Jul 499.4 735.5 v low 68%
Mount Baw Baw 10.0 +0.5 27.9 19 Jan 3.3 +0.3 -6.6 28 Aug
Mount Moornapa 20.1 +1.5 40.7 19 Jan 9.5 +0.3 0.9 29 Aug 536.2 839.1 v low 64%
Nilma North (Warragul) 20.2   39.6 19 Jan 8.9   -3.3 29 Aug 772.4
Pound Creek 19.8 +0.3 40.1 6 Jan 9.4 +0.1 -1.8 28 Jun 815.6 826.1 average 99%
Wilsons Promontory Lighthouse 17.5 +1.1 38.4 6 Jan 12.7 +1.4 5.6 7 Aug 1138.0 1056.6 high 108%
Yarram Airport 20.5 +0.6 40.0 28 Dec 8.4 -0.2 -3.2 3 Jul 441.6 611.9 v low 72%
East Central (district 86)
Cerberus 19.9 +0.8 41.9 6 Jan     -2.5 29 Aug 645.2 719.8 low 90%
Coldstream 21.2 +0.8 40.3 19 Jan 7.7 +0.3 -4.2 29 Aug
Essendon Airport 21.2 +1.5 42.5 19 Jan 10.6 +1.3 -2.4 29 Aug 463.2 585.6 low 79%
Ferny Creek 17.3   37.1 19 Jan 9.2   0.9 16 Sep 982.0
Melbourne (Olympic Park) 20.8   41.7 6 Jan 11.7   0.8 29 Aug
Melbourne Airport 21.1 +1.2 42.4 19 Jan 9.8 +0.2 -2.0 29 Aug 544.2 534.8 average 102%
Moorabbin Airport 20.8 +1.0 42.3 6 Jan 10.8 +0.6 -1.6 29 Aug 557.8 705.4 low 79%
Rhyll     37.2 28 Jan 12.3 +0.5 4.7 29 Aug 648.4 694.7 average 93%
Scoresby Research Institute 21.1 +1.5 41.0 19 Jan     -2.3 29 Aug 609.6 854.4 v low 71%
Viewbank 21.5 +0.6 42.0 6 Jan 10.0 0.0 -2.7 29 Aug
West Central (district 87)
Avalon Airport 21.3 +0.9 44.2 6 Jan 9.7 +0.3 -1.9 29 Aug 350.2 457.0 low 77%
Breakwater (Geelong Racecourse) 20.5   40.9 19 Jan 10.3   0.2 2 Jul 427.0
Laverton RAAF 20.9 +1.2 43.1 6 Jan 10.5 +1.2 -2.1 29 Aug 429.8 534.3 low 80%
Sheoaks 19.9 +1.0 42.4 19 Jan 8.7 +0.3 -2.4 29 Aug
North Central (district 88)
Castlemaine Prison 21.1 +1.2 42.8 19 Jan     -3.0 29 Aug 464.8 588.1 low 79%
Eildon Fire Tower 18.5 +0.6 39.2 20 Jan 8.9 +0.4 -0.7 29 Aug 623.2 650.3 average 96%
Lake Eildon 21.7 +1.2 41.3 20 Jan     -2.5 29 Aug 703.0 848.5 low 83%
Mangalore Airport 22.4 +1.3 43.1 20 Jan 8.6 +0.2 -2.8 17 Sep 432.8 564.4 low 77%
Maryborough 21.8 +1.3 42.9 19 Jan 8.8 +0.7 -1.8 14 Jul 417.8 526.6 low 79%
Redesdale 22.4 +1.9 42.5 19 Jan 7.3 -0.1 -4.4 29 Aug 450.4 577.7 low 78%
Wallan (Kilmore Gap) 18.0 +1.1 38.4 19 Jan 8.6 +0.5 0.4 29 Aug 616.2 684.9 average 90%
Western Plains (district 89)
Ararat Prison 20.8 +1.6 42.8 19 Jan 6.2 -0.9 -3.9 14 Jul 471.4 584.1 low 81%
Ballarat Aerodrome 18.9 +1.5 40.5 19 Jan 7.4 +0.3 -3.8 29 Aug 552.8 688.1 low 80%
Westmere 20.5 +0.6 43.5 19 Jan 7.1 -0.3 -3.9 26 Sep 412.0 515.2 low 80%
West Coast (district 90)
Aireys Inlet 19.5 +1.1 42.1 6 Jan 10.9 +0.3 2.9 29 Aug
Cape Nelson Lighthouse 18.2 +0.5 40.8 6 Jan 11.7 +0.2 2.1 13 Jul 527.8 707.2 v low 75%
Cape Otway Lighthouse 17.8 +0.5 40.5 6 Jan 11.6 +1.0 3.7 12 Jul 924.4 894.8 average 103%
Casterton 20.6 +0.5 42.4 28 Jan 8.3 0.0 -1.9 13 Jul 517.2 637.9 low 81%
Colac (Mount Gellibrand) 19.1 +0.7 41.6 19 Jan 9.2 +0.3 1.3 29 Sep
Dartmoor 20.1   43.5 6 Jan 8.8   -2.3 13 Jul 662.2
Hamilton Airport 19.9 +0.7 42.6 19 Jan 8.1 +0.4 -1.5 13 Jul 564.8 617.3 average 91%
Mortlake Racecourse 20.5 +1.2 43.2 6 Jan 7.8 +0.2 -3.0 26 Sep 480.0 574.7 low 84%
Portland (Cashmore Airport) 18.3 +0.6 39.4 6 Jan 9.7 +0.4 0.2 29 Aug 884.2 841.8 average 105%
Warrnambool Airport NDB 19.4 +0.4 42.6 6 Jan 9.0 +0.5 -0.7 12 Jul 671.2 726.2 average 92%

Notes

The annual climate summary lists the main features of the weather in Victoria using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.
The Australian annual climate statement provides a comprehensive summary of Australia's climate during 2018. Information about changes and long-term trends in Australia's climate can be found in State of the Climate 2018.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 12 pm on Friday 4 January 2019. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites are long-term means based on observations from all available years of record, which vary widely from site to site. They are not shown for sites with less than 10 years of record, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.
The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of long-term average rain.

The Rank indicates how rainfall this time compares with the climate record for the site, based on the decile ranking (very low rainfall is in decile 1, low in decile 2 or 3, average in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9 and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of average shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries