The Bureau of Meteorology (Australia's equivalent of the U.S.'s National Weather Service) is forecasting temperatures so high that they have needed to add colors to their table to show the hotter temperatures being forecast. Before the scale only went to 50C, the new scale goes to 54C.
Photo: Bureau of Meteorology
The all time record temperature in Australia is 50.7C, or about 123F, recorded January 2, 1960 at an airport in South Australia. Keep in mind the vast majority of Australia's population is located on the country's (or continent's) coastline. Much of the central part of the landmass does not have sensing equipment, so that record of 50.7C has probably fallen.
A forecaster in the New South Wales office is reminding people in Sydney that the image above is the results of one forecasting model, and that their office is not expecting temperatures that high. However, the country did set a record January 7th for the "national average maximum" of 40.33C (104.6F), and at least six of the 20 hottest days in Australia since record keeping began about 100 years ago have been recorded this year.
Unlike the warming period Central Pennsylvania is in, Australian forecasters are concerned that the hot air will stay in place for some time.