Australia set a record for its most sizzling day ever for a second straight day with an average national temperature of 41.9 degrees Celsius (107.4 Fahrenheit), a full degree higher than the past mark.
The Bureau of Meteorology said on Thursday the new nationally averaged maximum was arrived on Wednesday, topping the 40.9 degrees hit Tuesday, which beat the record of 40.3 C in January 2013.
The heatwave has exacerbated an unprecedented, drought-fueled series of bushfires ravaging huge zones of Australia.
As the heatwave proceeded with Thursday saw the highest December temperature at any point came to in Australia when the West Australian town of Eucla hit 49.8 degrees Celsius (121.6 Fahrenheit).
The past hottest December day was 49.5 degrees celsius in Birdsville, Queensland, in 1972.
Experts in Australia on Thursday proclaimed a seven-day state of emergency in New South Wales, the second in as many months, as a record heatwave fanned unprecedented bushfires raging across the region.
Somewhere in the range of 100 fires have been burning for weeks in the nation’s most crowded state. Half are uncontained, including a “mega-blaze” ringing Sydney and covering Australia’s greatest city in a haze of harmful smoke.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the state of emergency was because of “catastrophic weather conditions”.
“The biggest concern over the next few days is the unpredictability, with extreme wind conditions, extremely hot temperatures,” Berejiklian told reporters in Sydney.
2,000 firefighters are battling the blazes with the help of groups from the United States and Canada as well as the Australia Defense Force.
New South Wales Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons said five 100-man “strike teams” were on reserve to deploy to the most perilous fires, “given the enormity of some of these fire complexities and the severity of the forecast weather conditions that are expected to unfold throughout today”.
“The worst of the fire weather conditions, the extreme fire danger ratings we are expecting today, are centered around the greater Sydney environment,” he added.
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