Sydney just had its second-hottest day on record, with temperatures in the western suburb of Penrith reaching 47.3C at 3pm yesterday.
The figure was confirmed by the Bureau of Meteorology and would have been the hottest temperature ever recorded in Sydney, except for the discovery of a data point from a now decommissioned weather station in another suburb, Richmond, which hit 47.8C in 1939.
Yesterday’s high topped the previous modern high of 47C in Richmond last February, the ABC reports.
As the mercury in Penrith — which is around 50km inland from the CBD — hit an all-time high, temperatures in the city also climbed well above 40C before a cool sea breeze arrived around 1:30pm.
City temperatures at Observatory Hill reached a high of 43.4C — the hottest day in five years.
Total fire bans have been implemented throughout greater Sydney, and will remain in place to start the working week.
Fifth seed Kristina Mladenovic was forced to retire from the Sydney International tennis tournament due to problems with the heat, and officials called players off the court when the temperature exceeded 40C.
Meanwhile, play continued on the fourth day of the fifth Test between Australia and England at the Sydney Cricket Ground, clocking in the highest temperature ever recorded in an Ashes Test.
Blair Trewin from the Bureau of Meteorology told the SMH that the previous record temperature for an Ashes test match was 43.1C, recorded in Adelaide in 1908.
Temperatures didn’t drop below 22C overnight and quickly increased to more than 30C in the morning.
A south-easterly change was expected to bring cooler conditions to the coast today.
That may also give some respite to areas further west, although the suburbs are expected to remain hot for the rest of the day.
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