Hot, rainy Chinese New Year ahead

The wet weather will last for two or three days, said the Meteorological Service Singapore, and the heat is not expected to let up either.
The wet weather will last for two or three days, said the Meteorological Service Singapore, and the heat is not expected to let up either. ST PHOTO: MARK CHEONGST PHOTO: MARK CHEONG

Monsoon surge in region expected to bring with it widespread rain, says weatherman

Don't forget your umbrella when you go visiting this Chinese New Year, as a monsoon surge is expected to hit the region, bringing with it widespread rain and occasional windy conditions, although the heat is not expected to let up either.

The wet weather will last for two or three days and is due to the strengthening of north-easterly winds over the South China Sea and the surrounding region, said the Meteorological Service Singapore (MSS).

Rainfall for the first two weeks of this month is also expected to be slightly above average, with short thundery showers in the afternoons on four to five days.

The conditions are due to prevailing low-level winds blowing predominantly from the north or north-east.

Madam Elaine Tan, 50, a secretary who usually takes the train and then a bus to visit her in-laws in Choa Chu Kang, said she will probably take a taxi if it pours this Chinese New Year.

"I hope I can get one," she said.

Most parts of Singapore received below average rainfall last month. It was lowest around Sengkang, where 86mm to 98mm was recorded. The highest rainfall of 235mm to 322mm was recorded around Jurong.

Last month, the Republic also experienced a monsoon surge, albeit a weak one, causing moderate rain on a few days of the month.

Most days, the country experienced afternoon and early evening thundery showers, due to strong solar heating of land areas and convergence of winds in the vicinity of Singapore. The thundery showers were heaviest on Jan 22 when the highest total daily rainfall recorded was 78.8mm around the Kent Ridge area.

Most parts of Singapore, however, received below average rainfall last month.

It was lowest around Sengkang, where 86mm to 98mm was recorded. The highest rainfall of 235mm to 322mm was recorded around Jurong.

The mean daily maximum temperature of 31.6 deg C and minimum temperature of 26 deg C were 1.2 deg C and 2.1 deg C above their respective long-term means for January.

Last month was the hottest January since measurements started in 1929. The mean monthly temperature of 28.2 deg C surpassed the previous high of 28 deg C set in January 1998.

This comes on the heels of the warmest December on record. The mean monthly temperature then was 27.7 deg C, surpassing the previous high of 27.3 deg C in 1997.

Last year also tied with 1998 and 1997 as Singapore's warmest years on record, with an annual mean temperature of 28.3 deg C. Globally, 2015 was also the hottest year since measurements started.

And it seems the warmer temperatures experienced in the past few months are likely to persist into the first two weeks of this month.

Temperatures are expected to reach as high as 34 deg C on some days.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 03, 2016, with the headline 'Hot, rainy Chinese New Year ahead'. Print Edition | Subscribe