Temperatures are rising in Victoria, where near-record
temperatures are expected to sweep the state today.
A top of 38degC is forecast in Melbourne, and a scorching
high of 44degC is expected in Mildura - just one degree off
the hottest November day ever recorded in the state.
The temperature in Melbourne was 20degC at 7am (local time)
and the mercury is forecast to rise quickly with the high set
to roll in between 3pm and 5pm.
Bureau of Meteorology senior forecaster Dean Stewart said
while the forecast temperatures were a bit below record,
temperatures could be higher than expected and match the
Victorians have been warned to take care in the heat.
Total fire bans are in place in the Mallee and Wimmera
districts, with farmers in particular being warned of the
extreme fire risk in the northwest of the state.
A hot and sticky night is also expected. Mr Stewart said a
forecast change would not arrive until the early hours of
Friday, so the temperature would remain in the 30s until
"It will only be a relatively weak change in that it's going
to increase the humidity," he told AAP. "The temperature will
fall to about 23degC in the morning following the change."
Ambulance Victoria is calling for people to take it easy in
the heat, staying out of the sun in the afternoon, where
possible, and taking rest breaks in the shade where being
outside can't be avoided.