IMD issues severe heatwave red alert for next 48 hours - Hindustan Times
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IMD issues severe heatwave red alert for next 48 hours

By, Patiala
May 19, 2024 06:50 AM IST

Patiala and Pathankot recorded a maximum temperature of 45.1⁰C, while Amritsar saw its maximum temperature soar to 44.3⁰C. All weather observatories in the state reported a maximum temperature above 42⁰C, on Saturday. Bathinda recorded a maximum temperature of 44⁰C.

Parts of Punjab sweltered under heatwave conditions, with temperatures on Saturday soaring above 45 degrees Celsius across the state. Ludhiana, recording a maximum temperature of 46.1 degrees Celsius, was the hottest in the state.

Commuters cover their faces on a hot day in Amritsar on Saturday. (PTI)
Commuters cover their faces on a hot day in Amritsar on Saturday. (PTI)

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) predicted severe heatwave conditions over Punjab in the next five days and said high temperatures will persist. The IMD issued a red alert (take action) for the next 48 hours.

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The Met office also issued a red warning for Delhi, Haryana and west Rajasthan, stressing the need for “extreme care for vulnerable people”. A severe heat wave is declared if the departure from normal exceeds 6.4 notches. The threshold for a heatwave is met when the maximum temperature of a weather station reaches at least 40⁰C in the plains, 37⁰C in the coastal areas, and 30⁰C in the hilly regions, and the departure from normal is at least 4.5 notches.

The IMD officials said that the heatwave was observed in Amritsar, Ludhiana, Patiala, and Pathankot, while severe heatwave conditions were observed in Bathinda.

Patiala and Pathankot recorded a maximum temperature of 45.1⁰C, while Amritsar saw its maximum temperature soar to 44.3⁰C. All weather observatories in the state reported a maximum temperature above 42⁰C, on Saturday. Bathinda recorded a maximum temperature of 44⁰C.

“As compared to yesterday, there is a rise of 0.6°C in the average maximum temperature on Saturday, which is markedly above normal by 5.5°C, the weather department officials said adding that the dry weather is most likely to continue over Punjab during the next 4-5 days.

“High maximum temperatures will prevail over parts of the southern and western Punjab with maximum temperatures ranging between 44-46° Celsius. In some pockets, the maximum temperature may reach 46-47⁰C. This will lead to severe heatwave conditions over Punjab between May 18 and 22,” said an IMD official.

The minimum night temperatures also soared by 0.7⁰C over the past 24 hours, making even the nights warmer.

“This is one of the reasons why temperatures crossed 40⁰C as early as 9 am,” a weather official added.

The unbearable heat has compelled the state health department to, once again, advise people to stay indoors.

Power consumption soars

State’s power consumption further shot up by nearly 27% over the past 24 hours when compared to the corresponding period last year. Along with power consumption, peak power demand has also increased over the past 24 hours. The daily peak power demand over the past 24 hours has already crossed the 12,000 MW mark. The PSPCL’s data reveals that the highest peak demand so far, in the state, was recorded on May 17 at 12,923 MW. “The reason for high demand during the day is hot weather and continuous supply to all the agriculture feeders during the day for paddy sowing. The demand drops to 10,000 MW in the evening,” said a top official of Punjab State Power Corporation (PSPCL).

Mercury meter

Ludhiana 46.1⁰C

Patiala 45.1⁰C

Pathankot 45.1⁰C

Amritsar 44.3⁰C

Bathinda 44⁰C

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