Melbourne hit 23.3 degrees on Thursday afternoon, the hottest it has ever been in July and just eclipsing the previous of 23.1 from 1975.
Bureau of Meteorology climate services manager for Victoria Harvey Stern said the state was experiencing an uncommonly warm trend for 2013, but it wasn’t clear whether temperatures would continue to hit records into the summer months.
‘We have had a very warm start to the year – many places are averaging their warmest 18th July on record, so from that point of view it’s been a very unusual year in Victoria,’ he said.
‘However, it doesn’t indicate what will happen six months from now.’
Dr Stern said Thursday’s high temperatures had been accompanied by strong winds, with rain storms developing later in the afternoon.
‘We’re certainly getting big gusts now, of the order of 100km/h,’ he said.
That was mainly due to a sharp pressure gradient between a high over the Tasman Sea and a low to the west of the state.
Dr Stern said Friday would be a cooler 17 degrees, still pretty mild for July, with a few showers.