119-year record broken, Delhi’s max temp dips to 9.4o C
Delhi is experiencing the coldest winter in over a century. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) declared Monday as a coldest day in the national Capital in 119 years with maximum temperature dipping to 9.4 degrees Celsius at Safdarjung (official) observatory. The Regional Weather Forecast Centre (RWFC) has predicted no relief from cold wave on Tuesday.
Sixteen flights were diverted and four cancelled at the Delhi airport on Monday due to heavy fog, an official said. Many trains were running late.
Citing 24 hours temperature trend, the IMD said the Aya Nagar observatory recorded day temperature at 7.8 degrees Celsius, followed by Ridge 8.4 degrees Celsius, Palam 9 and Lodi Road 9.2 degrees Celsius.
Forecasting weekly weather for the national Capital, the RWFC has predicted rain on January 1, 2 and 3 while December 31 is still tagged as “cold wave” day. There will be no respite before January 3 as minimum temperature will fluctuate around 3-4 degrees Celsius, while maximum temperature will be around 16 degrees Celsius January 1 onwards.
Low visibility in Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR) delayed thirty trains. Kuldeep Srivastava, head RWFC, said the day temperature was almost half of what is considered normal for this day of the year. “Today was the coldest day recorded for the December,” Kuldeep said.
Around 3.30 pm, the IMD announced that Delhi is likely to break previous records of cold as maximum temperature was recorded 9.4 degrees Celsius. “Delhi is likely to record the coldest day today in last 119 years for December month as day temperature till 14.30 IST of today has been unusually following a coldest trend with Safdarjung recording 9.4 degrees Celsius and Palam 9.0 degrees Celsius,” IMD tweeted.
On Monday, a thick blanket of fog engulfed Delhi and the minimum temperature settled at 2.6 degrees Celsius.
The visibility recorded by Safdarjung and Palam observatories stood at zero metres at 8.30 am.
Skymet, an independent weather forecaster, said one of the reasons for this is the fact that Delhi has been reeling under both cold day and cold wave condition. “The wind direction will change from north-westerlies to easterlies, which will give some relief to the people of Delhi. “But the speed of winds is expected to increase, which in turn would add up to the chill factor. Thus, complete relief is not in sight anytime soon,” said the Skymet.
It said the weather models indicate chances of rain coupled with hailstorms on January 1 and 2 in the wake of a fresh western disturbance over the Himalayas.
Meanwhile on Tuesday, the maximum temperature may settle at 12 degrees Celsius and minimum temperature will be recorded near three degrees Celsius. While the New Year is expected to start with drizzling, light rain and thunderstorm activities, the maximum temperature is expected to hover around 17 degrees Celsius and minimum temperature will be recorded at four degrees Celsius on January 1. On January 2, the maximum temperature will remain at 17 degrees Celsius and minimum temperature will oscillate between 7 and 8 degrees Celsius.
Dr Rajender Jenamani, senior scientist at the National Weather Forecasting Centre (NWFC) said, “In 1976, there was a cold spell for six days. But after that the phenomenon has become more common in the late 90s. If fog or low cloud hours increase, obviously less solar energy is received and hence days are cold,” said RK Jenamani, senior scientist at National Weather Forecasting Centre.
Elaborating the unusual trend, MeT Scientists explained why Delhi is experiencing extreme cold weather.
The MeT said, “Delhi witnessed heavy rains on December 12 and 13. “Heavy rains mean water and moisture in air which led to formation of cloud and fog.” The formation of fog in atmosphere caused blocking of sunlight , moreover in this long spell of winter, the absence of winds from Himalaya region also played crucial role,” the MeT scientist explained the weather phenomenon”.
Citing his recent work on Delhi weather pattern, Dr Jenamani said there has been a fall in average maximum temperature by 2-3 degree C over 2 stations in the peak winter of January since 1989. The national Capital has been witnessing its most unforgiving winter season in the past 22 years, as the minimum temperature has remained around 3 degrees Celsius for a few days. It has been experiencing “severe cold days” since December 14, according to IMD.
Tuesday, 31 December 2019 | Staff Reporter | New Delhi
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