Victoria is set for a very hot Christmas, with the Bureau of Meteorology warning of severe heatwave conditions for much of the state on Friday and across the weekend.
After a cool day today, temperatures are forecast to rise on to 29 degrees Celsius in Melbourne on Friday, before reaching 31C on Christmas Eve and hitting a top of 35C on Christmas Day.
Senior forecaster at the bureau Rod Dixon told 774 ABC Melbourne conditions would not begin to cool until next week.
“[It’ll be] a scorcher for Christmas day, with winds tending around to the north and that’ll push the temperature up to the mid-thirties, pretty warm conditions,” he said.
“We’ll get a change though overnight Sunday into early Monday, so not quite as warm on Monday, 31 degrees and probably not quite as warm as the 35 on Tuesday either, probably high 20s.”
“But having said that, it will continue to be humid, so it’s not really true relief.”
Look out for your neighbours as regional areas swelter
In the state’s north-west, Mildura temperatures will reach 38 on Friday, ahead of weekend temperatures in the high 30s and early 40s.
Central and northern Victoria will also swelter with temperatures in the high 30s from Friday.
Despite the hot Christmas period, winds are forecast to be light, and the CFA has not yet declared a total fire ban for next four day period.
Daryn Medgley from Chaffey Aged Care in Mildura said while his facility offers a controlled environment for older people, those living in the community were at a greater risk from heat-related illnesses.
He said simply checking on your elderly neighbour was the best way to protect them from the dangers posed by heatwaves.
“[It’s important] to ensure that they’re well hydrated, offer them fluids, make sure they have their air conditioning on because many older people don’t put their air conditioning on,” Mr Medgley said.
“But the key message is check on your elderly neighbour, check on your elderly family member to make sure that they’re OK.”
Mr Godfrey said the Christmas period would be first stretch of unabating heat for the summer.
“Up until now — although a lot of people are saying that summer hasn’t really started — we have been getting the odd hot day,” he said.
“What is different about this is this is the first period of sustained heat where it’s going to continue and we’re not really going to get very cool temperatures at night time to cool things off,” he said.
This post originally appeared on ABC News.
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