South Australia in December 2017: wetter and warmer than average

December rainfall was above average for most Agricultural Districts and the Northwest, but little or no rain fell in the Far North. Both daytime and night time temperatures were warmer than average in most parts of the State, although temperatures were cooler than average in parts of the Northwest.

Rainfall above average

Warmer than average

  • December mean temperatures were 0.97 °C warmer than average for South Australia as a whole, and were warmer than average in all areas except northwestern parts of the Northwest
  • After several years of very warm Decembers (including the warmest December on record in 2015), it was the coolest December for South Australia as a whole since 2011
  • Daytime temperatures were warmer than average in most districts
  • Mean maximum temperatures were very much above average in western parts of the Western Agricultural district and in eastern parts of the Far North
  • The month began with a week of relatively cool days, with temperatures more than ten degrees cooler than average in western parts of the State on the 1st
  • Night time temperatures were also warmer than average in most districts, although not as markedly as daytime temperatures
  • Mean minimum temperatures were more than two degrees warmer than average in the far northeast of the State
  • Several sites had their highest December temperature on record as temperatures exceeded 45 °C in the second half of the month
  • Moomba Airport exceeded its December daily maximum temperature record on the 18th and then equalled this new record (47.1 °C) again on the 29th (although the old Moomba site reached 49.1 °C on 23 December 1972)
  • Cleve Aerodrome had its coldest December day on record when is reached just 16.0 °C on the 1st (although the nearby Cleve site only reached 12.8 °C on 1 December 1966)
  • Ernabella (Pukatja) had its warmest December night on record on the 18th

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057
Enquiries

Extremes in December 2017
Hottest day 47.1 °C at Marree Aero on the 18th
47.1 °C at Moomba Airport on the 18th and 29th
47.1 °C at Oodnadatta Airport on the 18th
Warmest days on average 38.5 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest days on average 21.4 °C at Neptune Island
Coldest day 12.1 °C at Mount Lofty on the 7th
Coldest night 3.4 °C at Keith (Munkora) on the 25th
Coolest nights on average 9.9 °C at Keith (Munkora)
Warmest nights on average 23.4 °C at Moomba Airport
Warmest night 32.8 °C at Moomba Airport on the 19th
Warmest on average overall 31.0 °C at Moomba Airport
Coolest on average overall 16.6 °C at Mount Lofty
Wettest overall 88.2 mm at Parawa (Sharon)
Driest overall 0.6 mm at Marree Aero
Wettest day 54.0 mm at Boolcoomatta on the 2nd
Strongest wind gust 122 km/h at Neptune Island 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 highest December daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Yunta Airstrip 29.8 on the 2nd 21.0 on the 5th in 2003 20



Record highest December total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Yunta Airstrip 50.0 47.6 in 2003 20 18.9

Highest December total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
December
Boolcoomatta 79.5 98.7 in 1992 18.2
Port Vincent 56.8 65.6 in 1992 19.3
Stansbury 58.6 77.2 in 1992 18.7
Cleve 48.4 48.8 in 1993 26.2
Parawa (Sharon) 88.2 126.6 in 1993 39.4
Yankalilla 44.6 50.5 in 1993* 24.3

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




Record lowest December total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Marree (Callanna) 1.0 1.2 in 2005 20 18.1
Marree Aero 0.6 2.0 in 2005 20 15.9

Lowest December total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
lower
Average for
December
Arkaroola 1.8 1.2 in 1994 26.1



Record highest December temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Woomera Aerodrome 45.5 on the 18th 45.4 on the 27th in 1949 69 32.4
Coober Pedy Airport 45.8 on the 18th 45.6 on the 20th in 2013 24 34.4
Moomba Airport 47.1 on the 18th and 29th 46.5 on the 23rd in 2005 23 36.6
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 46.4 on the 18th 46.0 on the 23rd in 2005 21 34.5



Record lowest December daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Cleve Aerodrome 16.0 on the 1st 16.9 on the 5th in 2013 22 27.4



Record highest December daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
December
Ernabella (Pukatja) 28.3 on the 18th 27.9 on the 23rd in 2009 20 19.2



Summary statistics for December 2017
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
December
2017
Diff
from
average
Highest for
December
2017
Mean for
December
2017
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
December
2017
Total for
December
2017
Average
for
December
Rank of
December
2017
Fraction of
December
average
Northwest (district 16)
Andamooka 35.2 +0.6 46.6 18th 20.3 +0.8 13.0 2nd 5.4 19.2 low 28%
Coober Pedy Airport 34.2 -0.2 45.8 18th 20.2 +0.2 11.8 2nd 18.0 20.7 average 87%
Ernabella (Pukatja) 33.0 -0.2 40.8 17th 18.6 -0.6 11.1 5th 35.0 65.1 average 54%
Mount Ive 31.8   42.0 27th 15.1   7.1 8th 21.7 17.0 high 128%
Roxby Downs (Olympic Dam Aerodrome) 34.8 +0.3 46.4 18th 19.3 +0.5 12.6 2nd 6.0 16.7 low 36%
Tarcoola Aero 33.5 -0.5 46.2 17th 17.4 -0.1 9.2 8th 26.4 21.6 average 122%
Woomera Aerodrome 33.1 +0.7 45.5 18th 18.3 +0.6 11.4 2nd 18.4 14.5 high 127%
Far North (district 17)
Arkaroola 33.9 +1.1 44.9 18th 18.0 +0.2 11.0 6th 1.8 26.1 low 7%
Leigh Creek Airport 34.5 +1.2 45.1 18th 19.2 +0.5 11.0 4th 3.2 23.0 low 14%
Marree Aero 37.1 +1.2 47.1 18th 20.7 +0.4 12.4 5th 0.6 15.9 lowest 4%
Moomba Airport 38.5 +1.9 47.1 29th 23.4 +1.1 14.5 5th 2.0 14.3 low 14%
Oodnadatta Airport 37.1 +0.7 47.1 18th 21.8 +0.5 13.4 2nd 19.4 17.4 average 111%
Western Agricultural (district 18)
Ceduna AMO 28.5 +1.1 44.0 23rd 14.3 +0.2 8.0 16th 24.4 20.8 high 117%
Cleve 26.6 -0.2 39.5 26th 14.8 +0.7 9.5 8th 48.4 26.2 high 185%
Cleve Aerodrome 26.3 -1.1 39.7 27th 14.2 +0.3 9.5 8th 39.8 23.9 high 167%
Coffin Bay (Point Avoid) 23.7   35.0 18th 14.5   10.5 6th 34.0
Cultana Training Area (Cultana (Defence) 32.6   42.1 27th 16.7   9.6 8th 18.8
Cummins Aero 27.5 -1.0 39.7 12th 12.7 -0.4 5.4 8th 26.0 23.1 average 113%
Elliston 25.7 +1.0 38.2 12th 14.9 +0.3 9.4 9th 34.2 16.7 high 205%
Kimba 29.4 0.0 40.0 27th 14.5 +0.6 6.5 8th 30.8 20.2 high 152%
Kyancutta 31.3 +0.4 43.0 23rd 13.5 +0.5 5.8 8th 16.8 20.8 average 81%
Minnipa Pirsa 30.2 -0.3 42.3 23rd 14.5 +0.3 7.8 8th 15.4 20.1 average 77%
Neptune Island 21.4 +0.8 28.8 18th 15.8 +0.9 12.9 3rd 24.8 17.4 high 143%
North Shields (Port Lincoln AWS) 24.9 +0.2 35.5 18th 13.9 -0.1 9.2 9th 22.8 19.0 average 120%
Nullarbor 28.7 +1.8 43.2 17th 14.3 0.0 8.2 21st 49.0 15.7 v high 312%
Port Augusta Aero 31.9 -0.4 45.9 18th 17.5 +0.3 12.5 2nd 24.8 25.7 average 96%
Streaky Bay 27.8 +0.4 40.0 12th 15.2 +0.2 10.2 9th 20.0 14.6 high 137%
Whyalla Aero 28.0 -0.3 41.8 13th 16.3 +0.4 11.7 8th 50.0 25.0 high 200%
Wudinna Aero 30.7 -0.6 43.0 23rd 13.7 +0.2 6.2 8th 16.0 18.1 average 88%
Upper North (district 19)
Hawker 32.1 +0.1 44.0 18th 16.7 +0.8 8.0 4th 6.2 22.3 low 28%
Northeast (district 20)
Gluepot Reserve (Gluepot) 31.2 -0.2 43.0 13th 13.9 +0.2 7.4 9th 24.6 35.9 average 69%
Yunta Airstrip 31.1 -0.2 42.7 18th 15.6 +1.2 9.3 8th 50.0 18.9 highest 265%
Lower North (district 21)
Clare High School 27.0 -0.5 38.3 27th 12.6 0.0 6.5 8th 62.0 37.9 high 164%
Port Pirie Aerodrome AWS 30.4   41.1 23rd 15.6   8.9 5th 42.6
Snowtown (Rayville Park) 29.9 -0.5 40.8 13th 11.8 -0.5 5.1 8th 41.0 29.6 high 139%
Yorke Peninsula (district 22A)
Kadina AWS 28.3 -1.0 39.9 23rd 13.5 +0.2 6.5 8th 41.4 32.2 high 129%
Minlaton Aero 27.6 0.0 38.7 12th 13.5 0.0 7.7 8th 35.6 19.6 high 182%
Stenhouse Bay 23.2 -0.1 36.2 18th 15.3 +0.2 12.2 3rd 26.8 17.4 v high 154%
Warooka 25.7 +0.2 36.0 12th 14.3 +0.5 9.4 8th 51.6 18.0 v high 287%
Kangaroo Island (district 22B)
Cape Borda 22.6 -0.1 31.9 18th 12.7 -0.3 9.1 25th 47.0 27.0 high 174%
Cape Willoughby 21.9 +1.2 32.2 27th 15.3 +0.8 12.0 8th 26.2 23.1 average 113%
Kingscote Aero 25.6 +0.6 34.2 13th 11.2 +0.3 4.5 5th 27.4 20.4 high 134%
Parndana Cfs AWS 25.2   36.3 18th 11.3   5.6 8th 36.0
Adelaide Plains (district 23A)
Adelaide (Kent Town) 27.9 +0.7 38.8 13th 15.8 +0.2 10.4 8th 28.2 29.1 average 97%
Adelaide (West Terrace / ngayirdapira) 27.0 +0.2 39.4 13th 15.6 +0.5 10.8 7th 29.2 26.3 average 111%
Adelaide Airport 26.1 +0.3 38.4 13th 15.3 +0.7 10.7 8th 31.6 24.2 high 131%
Edinburgh RAAF 28.0 +0.1 42.6 13th 15.1 +0.3 8.6 5th 30.0 25.7 average 117%
Parafield Airport 28.4 +0.6 40.4 13th 15.1 +0.2 9.5 9th 37.0 25.2 high 147%
Roseworthy AWS 29.5 0.0 42.3 13th 12.4 -0.2 5.4 5th 31.6 26.7 average 118%
County Light (district 23B)
Nuriootpa Pirsa 27.3 0.0 39.0 13th 12.2 -0.2 3.7 8th 19.4 34.0 average 57%
Rosedale (Turretfield Research Centre) 28.7 +0.4 41.0 13th 13.1 -0.4 6.2 8th 29.2 24.3 average 120%
Mount Lofty Ranges (district 23C)
Hindmarsh Island AWS 24.6 -0.1 38.9 13th 15.0 +0.4 11.5 25th 27.0 26.3 average 103%
Kuitpo Forest Reserve 23.8 -0.1 36.9 13th 12.7 +0.1 7.9 8th 38.8 35.7 average 109%
Mount Barker 25.8 +0.7 37.1 13th 11.9 +1.4 7.1 8th 50.0 35.1 high 142%
Mount Crawford AWS 24.8 -0.2 36.7 13th 12.0 -0.1 7.3 8th 30.4 34.6 average 88%
Mount Lofty 22.0 +2.6 32.9 13th 11.2 +0.7 6.7 8th 55.2
Noarlunga 26.0 -0.4 38.2 13th 15.1 -0.3 9.8 8th 36.2 21.9 high 165%
Parawa (Second Valley Forest AWS) 21.9 +0.1 32.8 18th 12.8 +0.8 8.8 8th 82.2 35.9 v high 229%
Victor Harbor (Encounter Bay) 24.0 0.0 37.9 13th 13.6 +0.9 9.1 26th 48.0 28.4 high 169%
Upper Murray Valley (district 24A)
Loxton Research Centre 30.3 +0.5 42.6 13th 13.8 +0.7 8.6 8th 20.2 24.2 average 83%
Renmark Aero 30.8 -0.4 43.3 13th 14.4 +0.2 8.0 3rd 37.0 22.7 high 163%
Lower Murray Valley (district 24B)
Eudunda 27.7 +0.7 38.1 13th 12.7 +0.3 6.4 8th 35.2 26.6 high 132%
Meningie 24.9 +0.3 36.4 12th 13.7 +0.7 9.8 25th 31.6 23.8 high 133%
Murray Bridge (Pallamana Aerodrome) 28.0 -0.9 41.3 27th 12.6 +0.3 7.9 31st 38.6 30.1 average 128%
Strathalbyn Racecourse 26.2 0.0 39.4 13th 13.4 +0.5 10.0 7th 41.2 23.8 high 173%
Upper Southeast (district 25B)
Keith 27.4 -0.3 40.0 27th 11.5 -0.4 6.0 8th 29.8 26.8 average 111%
Keith (Munkora) 28.0 -0.9 41.1 13th 9.9 -0.6 3.4 25th 28.8 32.6 average 88%
Lameroo (Austin Plains) 29.1 -0.4 42.0 13th 11.5 -0.7 5.5 8th 12.2 27.6 low 44%
Lower Southeast (district 26)
Cape Jaffa (The Limestone) 23.2 +0.3 34.1 18th 13.3 +1.0 8.3 22nd 13.6 23.7 average 57%
Coonawarra 25.0 0.0 37.9 13th 10.5 +0.4 5.0 5th 17.4 36.8 low 47%
Mount Gambier Aero 24.2 +1.2 37.8 27th 11.3 +1.3 6.2 8th 35.8 38.3 average 93%
Naracoorte Aerodrome 26.2 -1.2 38.9 13th 10.7 +0.7 3.9 5th 23.2 37.1 average 63%
Padthaway South 26.3 -0.5 39.3 13th 10.3 -0.3 4.4 5th 18.4 32.0 average 58%
Robe Airfield 22.9 -0.2 35.7 27th 12.4 +0.6 6.3 7th 18.6 32.1 average 58%

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 on Tuesday 9 January 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