Don’t turn your heater off just yet: there’s cold wind and snow on the way

James Coleman 20 September 2021 22
Storm Clouds, windy weather, wet weather, rain over Parliament House

Storm Clouds, windy weather, wet weather, rain over Parliament House. Photo: Michelle Kroll.

We all knew it was on its way. Less than a month into spring, and sure enough, there’s a cold snap coming to Canberra, potentially bringing snow, hail and damaging winds with it.

Residents of the ACT and parts of NSW are being warned to expect gusty and potentially damaging weather conditions, including possible hail and snow, building from today (20 September) and through tomorrow before abating by Wednesday.

BOM Senior Meteorologist Jackson Browne says that a cold front started making its way across southeast Australia from the Snowy Mountains over the weekend.

“There’s quite a bit of cold mass behind that system so we’re going to see snow levels drop from 1,000 to around 600 metres above sea level in parts of NSW,” Mr Browne said.

“It will be a bit of a mixed bag across the state. While it will be cold across most of the state, the showers that are providing the snow are small in nature, and not all locations will see snow. It’s possible that we may see snow in Goulburn, parts of the Central Tablelands, and parts of the hills of Canberra.”

This afternoon’s blustery wet weather won’t be the end of it, though.

The rain will ease off by around 9:00 pm, but Canberrans should expect a frost tonight as temperatures drop to -1 degrees Celsius. Tuesday will be partly cloudy with a maximum thermometer reading of 14 degrees with a 20 per cent chance of a shower or thunderstorm in the morning with possible small hail. Winds will reach speeds of up to 30 km/h during the early afternoon.


Rain moving in on Canberra this afternoon. Image: BOM.

Wednesday will start equally frosty with a low of -2 C before, rising to 17 over the day.

It will be a rapid affair, with the front running out of puff over north-eastern NSW by Wednesday. With the subsequent warm air mass, snow levels and temperatures will return to the normal spring levels we were just beginning to get used to. Thursday is predicted to reach a high of 20 C.

The BOM initially issued a severe weather warning for the ACT today (20 September) before cancelling it earlier this afternoon as the winds appeared to ease slightly. The situation will continue to be monitored and further warnings will be issued if necessary.

READ ALSO: Sure, Canberra’s winter was wet but the rest may be surprising

Elsewhere in Australia, the cool change will bring a significant drop in temperatures of up to 10 degrees in some places, with snow being dropped all the way up to the Queensland border. Hazardous surf conditions are expected over much of the coast, with a large south to south-easterly swell developing during Tuesday.

Snow and ice may lead to dangerous conditions on the roads, and people are being urged to drive to conditions.

With the recent rain and much of it still soaking the ground, the risk of damage from falling trees is increased. The ACT Emergency Services Agency is reminding Canberrans to do what they can to prepare for a storm.

Move your car under cover or away from trees, secure or put away loose items around your house, yard and balcony, keep at least eight metres away from fallen power lines or objects that may be energised, such as fences, and stay indoors away from windows.

For emergency help during floods and storms, call the ACT State Emergency Service on 132 500.

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22 Responses to Don’t turn your heater off just yet: there’s cold wind and snow on the way
Courtney Preo Courtney Preo 12:26 am 22 Sep 21

See y'all later, I'm moving back to Townsville 🖐 Justine Volant

Julie Macklin Julie Macklin 10:37 am 21 Sep 21

My heater has been off for a few weeks. My house is insulated and faced north.

Tom Henry Tom Henry 9:07 am 21 Sep 21

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrr ❄️❄️☃️⛄️❄️❄️ Sam Thornton Timothy Ingold

Bethany Roberts Bethany Roberts 9:38 pm 20 Sep 21

Selina Frances 😁 this is why you don’t plant tomatoes until after Melbourne Cup

    Julie Macklin Julie Macklin 10:35 am 21 Sep 21

    I like to plant them in September. I haven't lost any yet.

Sarah Young Sarah Young 8:46 pm 20 Sep 21

It’s bloody awful, no picnics I this weather!!

TimboinOz TimboinOz 7:03 pm 20 Sep 21

The idea that Spring in Canberra means heaters off – even for WoHouse ducted / feedback systems is just plain silly. Unless you’re NEW to Canberra.

This sort of article makes me wonder about the need to fill pages.

    TimboinOz TimboinOz 7:17 pm 20 Sep 21

    I’d add that Canberra has really only got two seasons, cold and variable, and HOT and variable.

    That first mentioned period is longer than the second. Our proximity to the Great Southern Ocean being the cause.

    From birth to 18yrs I lived on the coast, just a few kms south of Newcastle, with mostly four seasons, but of variable length.

Brian Perry Brian Perry 6:17 pm 20 Sep 21

I want a new car

Liz Lagos Liz Lagos 5:43 pm 20 Sep 21

Scott Utteridge might have to hold off with our gardening plans

Tania Turner Tania Turner 5:43 pm 20 Sep 21

ummm it pretty much does this every yr do people seriously have no memory of the yrs they have lived

    Mel Willis Mel Willis 6:32 pm 20 Sep 21

    Tania Turner September always try to trick us!

    Tania Turner Tania Turner 6:40 pm 20 Sep 21

    Mel Willis yep is always September and October that are the months that can't make up their minds on what weather it wants to be

    Mel Willis Mel Willis 6:42 pm 20 Sep 21

    Tania Turner can’t agree more! I remember moving her 11 years ago and being seriously caught out by the warm days followed by a sharp decrease in temperature plus the wind!! I didn’t have a car which made it hard.

Jenny Margherita Jenny Margherita 5:22 pm 20 Sep 21

Yes it’s freezing today ..

Josie Pachi Josie Pachi 5:08 pm 20 Sep 21

Erin Burke explains it

Mandy Truman Mandy Truman 4:33 pm 20 Sep 21

Told you Jayden Logan-Burke it was fake spring. Happens every year

Gay McGuire Gay McGuire 3:59 pm 20 Sep 21

Helen Pike I hope you haven’t put your winter woolies away! 😱

Ash Aw Ash Aw 3:31 pm 20 Sep 21

Ow Sh excuse me wot

Vander Leal Vander Leal 3:23 pm 20 Sep 21

Stay-at-Home weather... 🙂

Alice Boc Alice Boc 3:20 pm 20 Sep 21


great running weather.

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