Temperatures set to soar this weekend
THE weekend is on the way and it's shaping up to be a hot one.
The Lockyer Valley is expected to experience some of the highest temperatures in the state's south east in the coming days with the thermometer tipped to climb to 38 degrees at Gatton on Sunday.
Bureau of Meteorology meteorologist Andrew Bufalino said these sort of conditions so early in the season were quite unusual.
"We're looking at almost 13 degrees above average for this time of year. The average is 25.5 and we're going for 38 degrees in Gatton," Mr Bufalino said.
"It's not going to be the hottest in the state; places in the central west will be in excess of 40 degrees, but nonetheless it's going to be hot and for South East Queensland Gatton is one of the hottest places around."
Mr Bufalino explained that a lot of warm air had developed over the interior of the country and a number of troughs would start to push that very hot air across the eastern parts of the state.
"That should continue for the rest of the week with the really hot temperatures continuing - we're looking at mid to high 30's into the weekend and beyond," he said.
Friday provides our best chance of relief with some showers and thunderstorms forecast but beyond that the outlook for rain isn't promising.
"Tomorrow is the big day... after that there is a chance of some very isolated thunderstorm activity next week but due to the hot conditions and the dry lower levels we're expecting little to no rain from it," he said.
These conditions don't bode well for the risk of bushfire with brigades around the region on high alert after being called out to a string of blazes over the past week.
The fire danger rating for the region remains at 'Very High' until Sunday when it has been upgraded to 'Severe'.
As of Thursday afternoon according to the Queensland Rural Fire Service there were no fire bans or restrictions in place for the Lockyer Valley Regional Council area however there were restrictions for the Somerset Regional Council area.
No further Permits to Light Fire (PLF) will be issued in the Somerset council area until further notice and all current permits are cancelled.
This is not a fire ban and all fires exempt from the PLF system are not included in these restrictions and may still be lit.
Both people and animals will be vulnerable to heat stress in the unusually hot conditions so be sure to keep your fluids up.
RSPCA Queensland spokesman Michael Beatty said a dog can survive for days without food, but in these temperatures, if they don't have shade or can't reach water they could die.
"We would recommend that there are at least two to three containers of water in case one gets knocked over," Mr Beatty said.
He also reminded people of the danger of leaving animals in the car or on the back of utes in the sun.
"If it's thirty degrees outside, the temperature inside a car can potentially rise to well over forty degrees in less than five minutes.
"We tested a light coloured sedan and the temperature rose to 57 degrees in twelve minutes. Any animal left inside would have been dead."
Visit www.bom.gov.au for the latest on the weather.
For more information on current fire warnings, bushfire survival plans or alerts check www.qfes.qld.gov.au or www.ruralfire.qld.gov.au.