Bureau of Meteorology 2018-2019 summer outlook

Most of Australia is likely to see a hotter than normal summer period, according to the recently released Bureau of Meteorology’s 2018-19 Summer Outlook.

The Bureau's manager of long-range forecasting, Dr Andrew Watkins said the outlook showed most of the country had an 80 per cent chance of exceeding normal temperatures over the next three months.

"Summer in Australia typically brings hot temperatures for many communities and the outlook indicates this summer will be no different," Dr Watkins said.

"We've already seen extremely hot temperatures through parts of north and central Queensland in recent days and this should act as an important reminder of the kinds of conditions we can get during an Australian summer.

"In terms of rainfall, the outlook shows a drier than average three months is likely for large parts of Western Australia, Queensland and the Top End of the Northern Territory. For the rest of the country there is no strong push indicating wetter or drier than average conditions.

"Having said that, locally heavy rainfall events similar to what we have seen in NSW in the last two days are always a possibility during summer, no matter what the outlook is showing."

The Bureau's ENSO outlook remains at El Niño alert, meaning the chance of an El Niño forming in 2018 is 70 per cent, roughly triple the normal risk.

An El Niño typically brings drier and warmer conditions to eastern Australia but the rainfall effects tend to be less pronounced in the south during summer months.

The Bureau's spring summaries will be released on Monday, December 3 but preliminary figures show its likely to be one of the 10 warmest springs on record for the country as a whole.

Rainfall during spring has been a mixed bag with above-average rainfall through southern WA (apart from the southwest), most of the NT, northern and western SA, small areas in southeast Queensland and northeast NSW. Victoria and Tasmania are currently on track for one of the 10 driest springs on record respectively.