31 Jan 2011

Central Australia swelters

5:23 am on 31 January 2011

Central Australia is sweltering through a record-breaking string of hot days.

The ABC reports temperatures were on Sunday again heading for 46 degrees in the tourist town of Yulara, near Uluru.

Ambulances have been called to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park several times in recent weeks for visitors suffering heat stress.

The weather bureau says it is a remarkable hot spell.

"The temperature has actually been above 42 degrees for nine days running at Yulara, which beats the previous record of six days running greater than 42 degrees," said senior forecaster Mark Kersemakers.

"The previous record was 13 days greater than 40 degrees. We've already had 15 days of temperatures above 40."

Lyndavale station - 260km south-west of Alice Springs - reports there has never seen been anything like it before.

"As far as I can remember this is probably the hottest spell, I mean we've had hot spells before but this is really, really extreme," said Anne Kilgariff.