Livestock and animal deaths were widely reported and they have not yet stopped. Roads melted. Power generators stopped.
The BOM has predicted continued hot weather until April.
"There was less than 20 percent of normal rainfall for large areas of Australia".
While Australia sizzles the politicians are unaware and do not even have the problem on their screens.
Is Australia doomed by massive public ignorance and apathy?
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-02-01/ ... y/10769392
Australia swelters through its hottest month on record, with January mean temperature exceeding 30C
Updated about 5 hours ago
It's official: January 2019 was Australia's hottest-ever month on record going all the way back to 1910, according to the monthly climate review released by the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM).
There was less than 20 per cent of normal rainfall for large areas of Australia
Canberra airport had a record run of four days above 40C
BOM senior climatologist Andrew Watkins said last month's heat was unprecedented
It followed the hottest December on record for Australia — and there is no relief in sight for the months ahead.
January was a truly record-breaking month across several fronts: the highest minimum, the highest maximum and the highest mean temperatures for Australia as a whole.
The highest overnight minimum on record was broken multiple times with Wanaaring (Barrona Downs) in NSW currently holding the title at 36.6 degrees Celsius.
The mean temperature for January averaged across the country exceeded 30C — the first time this had occurred in any month, the BOM said.
The report also highlighted record long runs of consecutive hot days:
Birdsville (Qld) had 10 consecutive days over 45C
Alice Springs airport (NT) had 16 days in a row above 42C
Cloncurry (Qld) had 43 consecutive days over 40C — a state record for Queensland
Camooweal (Qld) had 40 consecutive days over 40C
Walungurru (NT) had 27 consecutive days above 40C
Bourke airport (NSW) had 21 consecutive days above 40C — a state record for New South Wales
Rainfall was also below average for most areas but a monsoon trough brought some significant totals to northern Queensland late in the month.
South Australia experienced its driest January since 2013.
And Adelaide had one of the city's hottest Januarys on record, with maximum temperatures the highest for at least 10 years.
For the first time since 1957, the BOM's Adelaide city site recorded zero rainfall for the month.
Western Australia had one of its hottest Januarys on record, but temperatures were cooler than average in parts of the west coast and south-west.
Rainfall for the state was below average and the month was the driest since 2005.
While most of WA was suffering in the heat, Perth recorded its coolest January in more than a decade and rainfall was about average.
New South Wales recorded its hottest January on record for mean, maximum, and minimum temperatures.
The north-east of the state also experienced one of its driest Januarys on record.
Sydney had one of its warmest Januarys on record, with average rainfall.
Victoria also set a new record for January heat.
Its rainfall was below average, with most of the state receiving less than 20 per cent of the month's average.
Melbourne was exceptionally warm, with some sites recording their highest ever January temperatures. The city also had one of the 10 driest Januarys on record.
The ACT also had its hottest January ever. The BOM's Canberra airport site had a record run of four days above 40C.
The Northern Territory recorded its hottest January and the delayed onset of the monsoon contributed to the Territory receiving less than half its average January rainfall.
Darwin had one of its warmest Januarys on record while rainfall was also below average.
Queensland similarly had its hottest January and a monsoon low brought heavy rainfall to parts of the state.
Brisbane was very warm, while rainfall was very low at about 20 per cent of the January average.
Tasmania had its hottest and driest January on record, as did Hobart.
Australian weather extremes January 2019
Location and date Notes
Hottest day: 49.5C Port Augusta Aero (SA), January 24 Record for site and highest recorded in Australia since 2013
Coldest day: 6.7C Mount Read (Tas), January 9
Coldest night: −0.5C Butlers Gorge (Tas), January 13
Warmest night: 36.6C Wanaaring (Borrona Downs AWS) (NSW), January 26 Hottest night on record for Australia. A record broken several times this month
Wettest day: 471.6mm Whyanbeel Valley (Qld), January 27
Why so hot?
The predicted El Nino did not eventuate this summer but even without the climate driver we usually associate with hot conditions the temperatures soared.
BOM senior climatologist Andrew Watkins said there were a few factors at play in the unprecedented heat.
"We saw heatwave conditions affect large parts of the country through most of the month, with records broken for both duration and also individual daily extremes," Dr Watkins said.
"The main contributor to this heat was a persistent high-pressure system in the Tasman sea which was blocking any cold fronts and cooler air from impacting the south of the country.
"The warming trend, which has seen Australian temperatures increase by more than one degree in the last 100 years, also contributed to the unusually warm conditions."
What have the impacts been?
The stand-out events this month were the record-breaking heatwaves over the south-east of Australia.
Andrew Gissing, of catastrophe modelling provider Risk Frontiers, said there were anecdotal reports of businesses suffering from blackouts leading to financial loss.
He said there were also reports of agricultural production being affected.
Be prepared for the heat
Heatwaves kill far more people than other natural disasters. ABC Emergency has a checklist of things you can do to be ready.
"Things like on really hot days milk production goes down because the cows suffer from heat stress as well," he said.
"We are seeing reports from the viticulture industry too about grapes being sunburned and shrivelling."
Then there are the human impacts.
So far it has been too soon to say how the heatwaves have affected people's health.
But Risk Frontiers' research has shown that historically heatwaves are Australia's biggest killer in terms of natural hazards.
"In fact they are bigger than the sum total of all other fatalities from natural hazards put together," he said.
It is the elderly, those with chronic health conditions and the very young who are most at risk.
Is there an end in sight?
red red red red RED. the whole of Australia bathed in red indicating a (mainly) over 80% chance of above median maximum temps
The outlook for the next three months suggests temperatures are very likely to be warmer than average for the majority of Australia.
The country will likely be drier than average, particularly in the west, and low to near-median stream flows are expected.