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Dangerous heat fuels brushfire threat in Perth, Western Australia

Dangerous heat across Western Australia will continue through the middle of the week before some relief arrives from Friday into the weekend.

Perth has endured scorching heat with temperatures reaching 42 C (108 F) on Monday and Tuesday. Both days are the hottest in February since 1997, according to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.

The normal high temperature in Perth during the first half of the month is around 32 C (89 F).

Western Power reported that their system usage reached an all-time high of 4,174 megawatts on Monday, breaking the previous record from January 2012.

This extreme heat will continue in Perth on Wednesday with a high temperature of 40.6 C (105 F). The heat will wane only slightly on Thursday as temperatures reach 38 C (100 F).

Residents are urged to limit outdoor activity during the afternoon and early evening hours. Be sure to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.

An onshore southerly flow will develop later Thursday into Saturday resulting in a slow cooling trend for Perth and surrounding areas.

Farther north of Perth, even hotter conditions will continue without relief this week in the northwestern portion of Western Australia. Highs in this area will hit 46 to 49 C (115 to 120 F).

Brushfires have also developed due to the combination of the heat, dry weather and gusty winds in the afternoon. The threat for additional brushfires will continue through at least Wednesday, with a more prolonged threat for areas north and east of Perth.

Stunning timelapse shows dramatic thunderstorm

The Uduc fire has already burned more than 1,100 ha (2,700 acres) according to Perth Now. A separate fire east of Harvey Township caused 7,000 power cuts.

The return of a southerly flow will also bring higher dew point air into southwest Western Australia which will aid in fire containment during the second half of the week.