Australia’s heatwave off the scale, the Bureau of Meteorology forced to add new colour to charts as “dome of heat” pushes 51C (123.8F)

Australia’s “dome of heat” has become so intense that the temperatures are rising off the charts – literally.

The air mass over the inland is still heating up – it hasn’t peaked 

The Bureau of Meteorology’s interactive weather forecasting chart has added new colours – deep purple and pink – to extend its previous temperature range that had been capped at 50 degrees.

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The range now extends to 54 degrees – well above the all-time record temperature of 50.7 degrees reached on January 2, 1960 at Oodnadatta Airport in South Australia – and, perhaps worringly, the forecast outlook is starting to deploy the new colours.

“The scale has just been increased today and I would anticipate it is because the forecast coming from the bureau’s model is showing temperatures in excess of 50 degrees,” David Jones, head of the bureau’s climate monitoring and prediction unit, said.

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