Bush smoke and storm clouds over Canberra. Photo: Katherine Griffiths
A heatwave could return to Canberra next month, according to the Bureau of Meteorology.
Record-breaking heat saw the city swelter through five consecutive days of temperatures above 37 degrees, the first recording of such prolonged warmth since the bureau began in 1934.
The extreme temperatures resulted in 22 cases of heat-related illness since Monday, sending up to eight people to hospital.
Spectators bake in the sun at Manuka Oval for the Prime Minister's XI cricket match. Photo: Rohan Thomson
Meteorologist Sean Carson said another heatwave could be expected next month.
"We could see some significant heatwaves in February as well," he said.
Mr Carson said a mild wet season in the north had caused the recent weather, allowing significant heat to build up before it was pushed across the south-east of the country.
He said, in the short term, easterly changes would lead to cooler temperatures in the capital as sea
breezes were pushed inland. Temperatures were expected to drop to 25 degrees on Monday, but ACT Rural Fire Service chief officer Andrew Stark said the increasing winds would keep volunteers on edge.
"It's going to be quite a dynamic week of weather," he said.
"The fire danger certainly has a chance of moving back into very high any day of the week."
Winds of around 20km/h were expected on Monday and to remain throughout the capital on Tuesday and Wednesday as temperatures reached 33 degrees.
Mr Stark said fire conditions had eased, with volunteers tackling a number of smaller blazes, including a three-hectare fire near the Kings Highway on Thursday.
Lightning strikes also sparked a few small fires over the weekend, but they were all located and extinguished on Saturday afternoon.
Mr Stark said lightning had sparked a number of fires east of Canberra, while blazes continued to burn towards the Wagga and Batlow areas.
Smoke haze remained in the capital across the weekend after drifting from fires near Braidwood, but Mr Stark said there were no fires that posed any danger to Canberra.
While conditions eased in Canberra, ACT firefighters headed interstate to assist volunteers facing three fires in the Tumut region.
The ACT RFS deployed 35 personnel to the area on Sunday afternoon to join strike teams tackling multiple blazes, including a 2675-hectare scrub fire burning north-west of Tumut.