It’s going to be hot and dry for a while more

PETALING JAYA: Malaysians will have to sweat it out until September as that’s how long the hot and dry weather will last, says the weatherman.

The Meteorological Department (MetMalaysia) has forecast fewer raincloud formations during the southwest monsoon phase, leading to less rainfall.

“Winds will typically blow from the south-west and humidity levels in the air will be lower,” it said.

However, in the west coast areas of the peninsula and western Sabah, downpours will occur in the early mornings because of the squall line phenomenon (a line of thunderstorms forming along or ahead of a cold front).

The department also issued heavy rain and thunderstorm warnings for several areas in Sabah and Sarawak yesterday.

MetMalaysia has a three-tier alert system to warn about a rise in temperature in its hot weather status report.

A Level-1 alert is issued when daily maximum temperatures are between 35°C and 37°C for three consecutive days, followed by Level-2 when temperatures hit between 37°C and 40°C, indicating a heatwave.

An emergency alert will be issued when temperatures soar above 40°C for three consecutive days.

In its latest drought monitor report, none of the department’s meteorological reporting stations nationwide reported a three-month cumulative rainfall deficit of over 35%, indicating a low chance of drought.

The department said it would continue monitoring the situation so that the country was well prepared to face any drought.

The Asean Specialised Meteorological Centre (ASMC) established a Level 1 alert following the start of the dry season associated with the onset of the south-west monsoon in the southern Asean region that also includes Brunei, Indonesia, Singapore and southern Thailand.

In a recent statement, it said recent wet weather in many parts of the southern Asean region helped subdue the development of fire hotspots and fire-prone areas and there was a low probability of severe transboundary haze, similar to that in 2015 and 2019, hitting the region.

“Nonetheless, early precautionary mitigation measures are advised to prevent the occurrence of transboundary haze in the region,” it said in a statement.

ASMC cautioned that hotspots could develop during occasional extended periods of dry and warm weather, despite the likelihood of higher than normal rainfall over the next few months.

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