A BLAST of hot weather will drift south east through inland Australia this weekend, threatening many areas with extreme fire warnings.
In Southern states, a total fire ban is in place in Victoria and all but two districts of South Australia on Saturday.
Temperatures across much of Victoria and SA are set to exceed 40 degrees Celsius on Saturday. Hobart will peak at 33 on Saturday.
Gusty northerly winds will move through ahead of a trough on Saturday.
Weatherzone meteorologist Tom Hough said fire danger ratings are likely to reach Extreme, or potentially Catastrophic, in some areas.
Temperatures will drop into the mid-to-low 30s in Victoria and SA on Sunday in southern parts of the states, as a cool change moves through.
Total fire bans have been issued across Victoria and all but 2 districts of SA on Saturday. Fire danger ratings will reach Extreme in parts of both states and may reach Catastrophic (Code Red in Victoria) in some areas: https://t.co/ia3rEWVTXppic.twitter.com/YFxs0WxxqC— Weatherzone (@weatherzone) January 5, 2018
The mass of hot air will also move in to NSW and Queensland over the weekend.
In North West NSW and southern and central Queensland, temperatures will hover around the 40s well into next week.
Southern and eastern NSW will peak over the weekend, reaching the high 30s and low 40s in most locations.
Western Sydney is set to hit 44 on Sunday.
NSW Rural Fire Service warned the community to be vigilant in the coming week, citing elevated fire risk in widespread areas across the state.
The change bringing some respite to SA and Victoria will be weaker by the time it rolls into the eastern states and above average temperatures are expected to persist well into next week.
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