Sizzling Taipei is on its longest hot spell record

Air conditioning units hang from the exterior wall of a building in Taipei, Taiwan, on Aug 13, 2017.
Air conditioning units hang from the exterior wall of a building in Taipei, Taiwan, on Aug 13, 2017.PHOTO: EPA

TAIPEI (China Post/Asia News Network) - The mercury in Taipei topped 36 degrees Celsius for the 10th day in a row Monday (Aug 14), making it the longest streak of scorching weather in the city on record.

Daytime temperatures have passed 36 deg C every day since Aug 5, hitting a high on Monday of 38.2 deg C, according to the Central Weather Bureau (CWB).

This surpassed the nine-day record set from July 8-16 in 2012 to become the lengthiest Taipei hot spell in the 120 years since the Taipei weather station began keeping records.

There is a chance the record hot spell will continue, said the CWB, which is forecasting more hot days to come this week.

Temperatures have also reached 37 deg C for nine days so far in August, breaking another 120-year record.

Most parts of Taiwan also saw dangerously high levels of ultraviolet radiation on Sunday, according to the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA)

The agency's standard UV index hit 14 at 1pm Sunday in the north-eastern Yilan county, 13, on the outlying island of Penghu and parts of Chiayi County, Taichung and Miaoli County, and 12 in parts of Taoyuan, Hsinchu, Yunlin, Tainan, Kaohsiung and Taitung.

Under the UV index, readings of 11 or higher are considered "extreme" and can cause sunburn within 15 minutes of exposure, according to the EPA.

The prolonged hot spell has put great strain on Taiwan's power system, which ran on dangerously thin reserve capacities - prompting the issuance of red power supply alerts - in the past week.

However, the repair of transmission towers at Hualien's Heping power plant, which were knocked down in a storm last month, was completed Monday, adding 1.3 gigawatts to the grid.

The Ministry of Economic Affairs, which oversees Taiwan's state-owned electricity company, said Monday that Taiwan would not see another red alert again this summer as long as the power supply system remained stable.