KUALA LUMPUR: The scorching hot weather prompted by El Nino since early January is expected to persist till March.
Malaysian Meteorological Department director-general Datuk Che Gayah Ismail reminded the public against open burning and to consume plenty of water to prevent hydration.
The El Nino phenomenon is also the reason why there was no occurrence of a major flood in the country as it usually happens following heavy downpours, she told Bernama here Friday.
She said the weather in the month of December is usually more humid but monsoon activities that brought cold surges from China and Siberia have lessened, resulting in reduced rainfall in the country.
"The condition resulted in a drop in rainfall of between 20 and 60 per cent for most areas in the country rendering the weather hot and dry with temperatures rising by 0.5 to 2.0 degree Celsius," she said.
Typically during the rainy season, areas in the east coast of the peninsula, west Sarawak and northeast of Sabah would experience heavy downpours between November and January.
According to the department's records, the rainfall distribution in December last year in the interior of Pahang, Negri Sembilan, south and north of Perak, north of Kedah and Perlis was less than 200 millimetres.
Areas in the east coast had also recorded a drop of more than 20 per cent in rainfall. - Bernama