South Australia in March 2018: a dry start to autumn

Rainfall was below average for most South Australia except in the Far North Pastoral District. Both mean maximum and minimum temperatures were above average for the State as a whole.

Below average rainfall across the south; above average rainfall in the far north

  • March rainfall was merely one-third of average for South Australia as a whole
  • March rainfall totals were less than 5 mm across southern parts of the Pastoral regions and south into the central and western Agricultural regions; many sites either had their driest March on record or driest March for at least 20 years

Above average mean maximum and minimum temperatures

  • Mean maximum temperature was 1.34 °C above average, and mean minimum temperature was 0.42 °C above average for South Australia as a whole
  • March continued a run of nine consecutive months of warmer than average temperatures for South Australia
  • On the 17th, maximum temperatures reached the low-40s, and were 8 °C to 12 °C above average, in the southern Pastoral and Eastern Eyre Peninsula regions
  • Padthaway South in the southeast recorded the State's coldest morning of the month with 2.9 °C on the 21st, which was its lowest temperature in March for four years since 1.7 °C was recorded on 22 March 2014

Further information

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Extremes in March 2018
Hottest day 42.6 °C at Tarcoola Aero on the 17th
Warmest days on average 35.3 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest days on average 22.1 °C at Mount Lofty
22.1 °C at Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS)
Coldest day 14.4 °C at Mount Lofty on the 26th
Coldest night 2.9 °C at Padthaway South on the 21st
Coolest nights on average 10.3 °C at Keith (Munkora)
Warmest nights on average 21.3 °C at Moomba Airport
Warmest night 26.2 °C at Moomba Airport on the 8th
Warmest on average overall 28.3 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest on average overall 16.5 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 62.0 mm at Moomba Airport
Wettest day 61.4 mm at Moomba Airport on the 23rd
Strongest wind gust 107 km/h at Naracoorte Aerodrome on the 18th

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


Record lowest March total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
March
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 4.2 4.6 in 2005 24 22.0
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 0.8 1.2 in 1997 24 18.5
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 16.2 17.0 in 2015 20 35.5

Lowest March total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Average for
March
Adelaide (Glen Osmond) 7.6 0.0 in 1994 26.4
Belair (State Flora Nursery) 6.4 0.0 in 1994 32.7
Cape Willoughby 4.8 0.0 in 1994 21.3
Coulta 1.4 0.0 in 1994 17.8
Lenswood 6.4 0.2 in 1994 40.4
Meningie 3.8 0.8 in 1994 22.0
Mount Bold Reservoir 12.0 0.4 in 1994 31.9
Mount Schank (Jethia) 7.0 1.8 in 1994 37.1
Neptune Island 1.0 0.0 in 1994 19.0
Penneshaw 2.4 0.2 in 1994 18.1
Strathalbyn 4.8 0.0 in 1994 23.5
Williamstown 5.8 0.0 in 1994 25.0
Williamstown (South Para Reservoir) 4.2 0.0 in 1994 29.2
Wilmington 0.8 0.0 in 1994 18.8
Keith 3.8 3.2 in 1995 21.1
Heathfield Works Depot 9.0 0.0 in 1994* 40.2
Coffin Bay 2.8 1.2 in 1997 17.8
Edinburgh RAAF 6.2 4.8 in 1997 24.9
Lyndoch 2.4 =2.4 in 1997 22.2
Stenhouse Bay 4.2 0.4 in 1997 20.1
Tarlee 3.1 1.8 in 1997 20.8
Wirrabara Forest 5.6 3.2 in 1997 28.1
Adelaide (Morphett Vale) 7.0 4.8 in 1997* 25.2
Clarendon 11.8 4.3 in 1997* 34.6
Happy Valley Reservoir 12.2 7.8 in 1997* 28.9
Lock 1.2 =1.2 in 1997* 16.6
Prospect Hill 13.6 11.0 in 1998 36.1

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




Summary statistics for March 2018
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
March
2018
Diff
from
average
Highest for
March
2018
Mean for
March
2018
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
March
2018
Total for
March
2018
Average
for
March
Rank of
March
2018
Fraction of
March
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 33.2 +1.0 41.2 17th 18.7 +0.4 11.2 27th 0 13.9 lowest 0%
Coober Pedy Airport 33.2 +1.4 41.8 17th 18.5 +0.1 13.4 26th 0 11.2 lowest 0%
Ernabella (Pukatja) 32.1 +0.8 37.6 17th 18.3 +0.8 14.1 15th 29.4 27.1 average 108%
Mount Ive 31.1   39.7 17th 14.6   8.8 19th 1.4 13.6 average 10%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 33.2 +1.0 41.3 17th 17.4 +0.3 8.1 27th 0 6.5 lowest 0%
Tarcoola Aero 33.1 +1.5 42.6 17th 16.0 -0.2 10.2 30th 0.2 17.5 low 1%
Woomera Aerodrome 32.0 +1.5 41.8 17th 17.1 +0.2 11.7 27th 0 13.0 lowest 0%
Far North (district 17)
Arkaroola 31.2 +1.2 38.4 3rd 16.3 +0.4 11.2 28th 0 29.7 lowest 0%
Leigh Creek Airport 33.1 +1.8 40.1 17th 17.8 +0.3 9.4 27th 0 18.9 lowest 0%
Marree Aero 35.1 +1.4 41.2 17th 19.0 +0.2 10.7 27th 0 10.8 lowest 0%
Moomba Airport 35.3 +1.3 41.4 17th 21.3 +0.8 15.1 27th 62.0 23.0 high 270%
Oodnadatta Airport 34.9 +1.2 41.4 17th 19.4 +0.1 12.0 27th 4.0 14.0 average 29%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 26.7 0.0 38.2 9th 13.5 +0.2 5.7 15th 0.4 16.0 low 3%
Cleve 26.3 +0.4 35.5 17th 15.3 +0.6 10.6 29th 10.6 21.9 average 48%
Cleve Aerodrome 26.4 +0.3 36.1 10th 14.8 +0.3 10.1 21st 7.0 22.1 average 32%
Coffin Bay (Point Avoid) 23.9   35.9 9th 15.6   9.8 22nd 2.0
Cultana (Defence) 29.8   40.4 17th 15.7   11.0 21st 0.4
Cummins Aero 27.0 -0.3 35.8 9th 13.7 +0.1 5.0 22nd 1.0 17.9 v low 6%
Elliston 25.1 +0.9 36.2 9th 15.2 +0.9 10.4 22nd 5.2 15.0 average 35%
Kimba 28.7 +0.8 36.0 10th 13.4 -0.6 8.5 19th 2.0 16.9 low 12%
Kyancutta 30.3 +0.4 37.7 10th 12.7 +0.3 7.4 22nd 4.8 14.1 average 34%
Minnipa Pirsa 29.4 +0.6 36.5 9th 14.2 +0.1 9.8 29th 1.2 19.8 low 6%
Neptune Island 22.2 +1.1 29.1 9th 16.9 +0.8 14.7 26th 1.0 19.0 v low 5%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 25.9 +1.6 36.9 10th 14.9 +0.3 7.9 22nd 0.8 18.5 lowest 4%
Nullarbor 27.2 +0.6 39.1 16th 14.5 +0.3 7.7 29th 1.0 21.0 low 5%
Port Augusta Aero 31.1 +0.5 42.0 17th 16.6 0.0 9.2 27th 1.2 14.6 low 8%
Whyalla Aero 28.1 +0.8 40.0 17th 15.7 +0.1 7.7 27th 2.6 18.8 low 14%
Wudinna Aero 30.1 +0.6 37.2 9th 12.7 -0.3 6.6 29th 2.6 17.1 average 15%
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker 31.1 +0.9 38.3 17th 15.8 +0.8 10.0 27th 0.2 16.4 low 1%
Yongala 28.0 +0.8 35.8 17th 11.5 +0.6 6.6 27th 6.6 16.4 average 40%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 30.2 +0.8 38.0 10th 11.7 -0.7 6.0 27th 1.4 13.5 low 10%
Yunta Airstrip 30.0 +1.1 38.7 17th 12.8 -0.1 4.8 27th 1.6 12.4 average 13%
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 27.1 +1.0 34.6 10th 12.0 -0.2 7.2 30th 13.6 24.8 average 55%
Port Pirie Aerodrome AWS 30.2   39.5 17th 13.8   9.2 22nd 3.8
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 29.3 +0.6 36.9 24th 11.5 -0.6 6.0 22nd 8.2 18.8 average 44%
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Edithburgh 24.8 +1.3 34.7 24th 16.4 +0.7 12.1 30th 4.0 17.3 low 23%
Kadina AWS 28.1 -0.4 37.4 9th 13.2 -0.4 7.7 22nd 6.2 32.0 low 19%
Minlaton Aero 26.7 -0.1 35.6 10th 14.3 +0.3 7.2 26th 3.2 16.1 v low 20%
Stenhouse Bay 24.3 +1.0 36.0 10th 16.5 +0.5 12.3 31st 4.2 20.1 v low 21%
Warooka 25.5 +0.4 35.0 10th 15.4 +0.7 10.0 26th 4.6 16.4 low 28%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 22.9 +0.3 32.5 9th 14.2 +0.5 9.8 27th 3.8 25.0 v low 15%
Cape Willoughby 22.3 +1.6 32.5 10th 16.2 +0.6 11.2 26th 4.8 21.3 low 23%
Kingscote Aero 25.8 +1.3 36.2 10th 12.6 +1.3 5.3 31st 1.2 24.8 v low 5%
Parndana Cfs AWS 24.9   35.3 10th 12.5   8.3 22nd 4.2
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (Kent Town) 27.5 +1.0 36.4 10th 15.8 +0.4 11.2 21st 5.8 26.8 low 22%
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 27.2 +1.2 35.5 9th 15.8 +0.6 11.4 21st 4.4 23.9 low 18%
Adelaide Airport 26.3 +0.8 36.2 9th 15.9 +1.4 10.6 31st 6.0 21.6 low 28%
Edinburgh RAAF 27.9 +1.0 36.1 10th 14.7 +0.2 9.6 31st 6.2 24.9 low 25%
Parafield Airport 28.2 +1.3 36.6 9th 14.8 +0.2 10.1 5th 6.6 22.3 average 30%
Roseworthy AWS 28.8 +0.5 37.7 10th 12.1 -0.8 6.2 13th 7.2 18.5 average 39%
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa Pirsa 26.8 +0.8 35.3 10th 11.6 -0.4 5.0 26th 7.6 27.1 low 28%
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 28.2 +0.8 36.9 10th 12.4 -1.0 6.0 5th 9.0 20.2 average 45%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 25.0 +1.0 36.0 10th 15.2 +0.7 10.9 27th 6.4 15.8 low 41%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 23.6 +0.4 33.3 10th 13.1 +0.3 7.0 21st 16.2 35.5 lowest 46%
Mount Barker 25.2 +0.5 35.5 10th 11.7 +1.2 6.0 21st 13.6 31.2 average 44%
Mount Crawford AWS 24.4 +1.0 33.2 10th 12.1 -0.1 5.5 21st 8.2 29.1 v low 28%
Mount Lofty 22.1 +2.8 30.7 9th 11.0 -0.2 4.0 21st 12.2 44.8 low 27%
Noarlunga 26.0 +0.3 35.5 9th 15.9 +0.3 9.2 21st 8.0 20.9 low 38%
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 22.1 +0.9 32.1 10th 13.4 +0.4 9.1 26th 16.8 35.4 low 47%
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 24.7 +1.1 36.0 10th 13.6 +0.7 7.5 31st 13.8 20.2 low 68%
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 29.5 +1.2 36.8 24th 12.1 -0.1 7.0 27th 5.6 11.7 average 48%
Renmark Aero 30.1 +1.0 38.3 17th 12.7 -0.3 6.6 26th 3.0 11.6 average 26%
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 27.1 +1.4 35.4 10th 12.2 -0.1 7.1 21st 21.4 20.9 average 102%
Meningie 25.6 +1.2 35.0 10th 13.4 +0.7 7.2 31st 3.8 22.0 low 17%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 27.9 +0.2 38.0 10th 12.4 -0.1 6.0 31st 3.8 21.2 v low 18%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 26.2 +0.9 36.6 10th 13.5 +0.7 6.4 21st 5.4 18.2 low 30%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 27.3 +0.4 37.0 10th 11.3 -0.2 3.5 14th 3.8 21.1 low 18%
Keith (Munkora) 27.9 +0.3 37.2 10th 10.3 0.0 3.0 5th 3.0 18.4 v low 16%
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 28.6 +0.6 37.1 10th 11.3 -0.8 5.3 27th 1.6 18.2 v low 9%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 23.8 +1.1 33.6 10th 13.7 +1.2 10.1 21st 4.2 22.0 lowest 19%
Coonawarra 25.4 +0.4 36.0 10th 10.9 +0.7 4.9 5th 11.2 26.9 low 42%
Mount Gambier Aero 24.7 +1.5 37.0 10th 11.6 +1.0 7.2 5th 30.2 35.7 average 85%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 26.4 +0.2 36.8 10th 10.7 +0.6 3.9 21st 10.6 25.1 low 42%
Padthaway South 26.4 +0.4 36.3 10th 10.7 +0.2 2.9 21st 14.0 25.1 average 56%
Robe Airfield 23.8 +0.6 33.2 10th 12.8 +1.5 8.2 31st 10.6 27.2 v low 39%

Notes

The Monthly climate summary, generally published on the first working day of each month, lists the main features of the weather in South Australia 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.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 9 am on Tuesday 3 April 2018. 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