Temperatures reach 40 degrees in parts of Delhi, second hottest March day since 2010
The day temperature in Delhi touched 38.6 degrees Celsius on Wednesday — the second hottest day in March in the Capital since 2010. In Palam, it was 40.6.
In March 31, 2017, the maximum temperature had touched 38.8 degrees Celsius, the hottest March day since 2010.
In 2010, the temperature had touched 39.2 degrees on March 22, the hottest day Delhi has witnessed this decade in this month.
Even though the Safdarjung observatory, considered a representative of the entire city, recorded 38.6 degrees Celsius, the mercury breached the 40-degree Celsius mark in Palam on Wednesday, touching 40.6. It was the hottest March day in Palam since 2010.
“Palam experienced a heat wave-like condition on Wednesday as the day temperature crossed the 40-degree Celsius mark, which was at least eight degrees above normal,” said Kuldeep Srivastava, a senior scientist with the regional weather forecasting centre in New Delhi.
The minimum temperature at the Safdarjung observatory was recorded at 17.6 degrees Celsius, which is normal during this time of the year.
At Aya Nagar and the Ridge, the day temperature was recorded at 39.2 and 39.9 degrees Celsius.
A heat wave is declared when the day temperature in at least two to three adjacent observatories crosses 40 degrees Celsius and the departure from normal is more than five degrees.
The rising mercury level seems to be in tune with the Indian Meteorological Department’s warning that the seasonal average temperature between March and May could be more than one degree above normal, over several parts of northwest and neighbouring central India.
The IMD’s outlook also said normal to above normal heat wave conditions are likely over core heat wave zone of the country.
“The day temperature would continue to hover between 36 degrees to 38 degrees over the next few days as there wont be any cloud cover. The clear sky would help to build up the heat during the day,” said a senior met official.
Met officials explained that one of the reasons because of which temperatures across northwest India are rising is because of low rainfall and snowfall in the winter.
“Usually, Delhi-NCR receives around 10 western disturbances (WD) during the winter months. WDs help to trigger rain in the plains of northwest India and snow in the hills. This helps to keep a check on the rising temperatures at least up to March as there is moisture in the soil. But this year, the NCR region received around four WDs resulting in less rain and snowfall. With little moisture left in the soil, temperatures are rising fast,” said Srivastava.
A weather system over Rajasthan is also channelling the hot and dry winds from the west over the NCR region.
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