‘Normal’ temperatures this month due to higher number of WDs, says IMDUpdated: Jan 27, 2020, 21:07 IST
Gurugram: Seven western disturbances have affected the weather in the national capital region (NCR) in January so far, said officials of the India Meteorological Department (IMD). The higher than usual number of disturbances made sure the temperatures didn’t deviate by more than two to three degrees from the normal, they said, adding that the month usually sees around two to three western disturbances.
A western disturbance (WD) is a storm originating in the Mediterranean region that brings winter rain to the northwestern parts of the Indian subcontinent.
Of the seven WDs this month, four, including the current one, were active and brought rain in the NCR, the IMD officials said, and predicted light rain on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The high frequency of WDs prevented the temperatures from falling drastically as compared to last year ’s January when the minimum temperature had touched 1 degree Celsius in the first week. As per IMD data, the minimum temperature in January this year has been around five degrees Celsius.
Kuldeep Srivastava, head of the IMD’s regional forecasting centre at Delhi, said, “Temperatures between January 12 to date haven’t deviated by a large number from the normal. The difference has been of one/two degrees.”
The normal maximum temperature for January is 21 degrees Celsius, and the normal minimum temperature is 8 degrees Celsius, as determined by the IMD.
According to the IMD, no cold day/severe cold day was recorded in January in the city, unlike in December when the city saw the longest ever recorded spell of cold/severe cold days (18 days).
According to the IMD, a ‘severe cold day’ is when two things happen — the minimum temperature drops to less than 10 degrees Celsius and the maximum temperature is at least 6.4 degrees Celsius below normal, while a ‘cold day’ is registered when the minimum temperature is less than 10 degrees Celsius and the maximum is 4.4 degrees Celsius below normal.
Experts said that western disturbances play a role in making the weather warmer. “Whenever there is a WD, wind direction changes and cold, northerly winds are not able to penetrate central and peninsular parts,” said Mahesh Palawat, vice-president, climate change and meteorology, Skymet Weather.
The IMD officials said high wind speeds also contributed to the ‘normal’ temperature. “Wind speeds were high on several days and were around 20-25 kmph, which cleared the weather and caused a rise in the maximum temperature,” said Srivastava.
In its Seasonal Temperature Outlook for December 2019 to February 2020, the IMD had said that there is relatively “high probability” for above normal minimum temperatures in the “core cold wave zone” that includes Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.