Melbourne – Australia
Victoria will also experience high temperatures today, with the mercury set to soar past 40 degrees Celsius.
Temperatures in Mildura and Birchip are expected to reach a state high of 44C, while nearby Ouyen, Swan Hill and Kerang are set for 43C.
Further south, the weather bureau is forecasting Horsham to reach 42C and Stawell 41C.
On Friday, the heat melted a 10-kilometre stretch of the Hume Freeway in central Victoria.
The Country Fire Authority (CFA) has issued a state-wide fire ban, with hot and dry conditions coupled with wind gusts of up to 80 kilometres per hour predicted in Victoria’s north-west.
Emergency authorities are watching for potential bushfires and calling for residents to be prepared and to avoid heat stress.
St. Kilda beach
The CFA’s Mildura operations officer, Rob McNally, has urged residents whose homes were threatened by fires to leave early.
“When a fire starts it’ll run hard, it’ll impact on a lot of people, covers great distances in a short space of time, impacts on road networks, electricity, mobile phones,” he said.
“If you’re planning to leave, please leave early.”
A gusty southerly change is expected to sweep across the state late afternoon or early evening, with the temperature expected to plummet by up to 20C.
“It’ll be quite a marked drop,” the weather bureau’s Michael Logan said.
“We’ll go from around about that time temperatures will probably still be up around the 40 degree mark, and within an hour or two they’ll probably be back around the low 20s, so it will be a really pronounced change with the temperatures as it comes through.”