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IMD Issues ‘Severe Heatwave’ Alert for Northern India from May 18-20

The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a forecast warning of a severe heatwave covering parts of northern India, including Punjab and Delhi, from May 18-20. With temperatures expected to soar, the region braces for scorching heat conditions that could reach up to 45 degrees Celsius in the national capital.

Severe Heatwave Conditions Predicted

According to the IMD, severe heatwave conditions are very likely in some parts of west Rajasthan during May 17-20 and in Punjab, Haryana, and Delhi during May 18-20. The mercury is anticipated to cross the 40-degree-Celsius mark, leading to severe heatwave conditions in parts of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab, and West Rajasthan.

Regional Temperature Trends

Recent temperature records indicate exceptionally high temperatures across various regions. Rajasthan recorded the highest temperatures, touching 46 degrees Celsius in some places. Similar weather patterns prevailed in parts of Haryana, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Madhya Pradesh, with temperatures 2-3 degrees above normal.

Understanding Heatwaves

Heatwaves are characterized not just by high temperatures but also by deviations from normal temperature patterns. While a location experiencing temperatures of 42 or 43 degrees Celsius may not be considered to be in a heatwave if it’s typical for that area, another region could be facing a heatwave at lower temperatures if it deviates significantly from its usual climate. This distinction is crucial in assessing the severity and impact of heatwave conditions.

Anticipating Monsoon Relief

In contrast to the heatwave gripping northern India, the IMD predicts the onset of the southwest monsoon in the southern part of the country. Rainfall and thunderstorms are expected in regions like Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Kerala, south Karnataka, and coastal areas of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. While Tamil Nadu and Kerala are on alert for “very heavy rainfall” until Monday, other states can anticipate moderate showers in the coming days. Additionally, isolated rainfall accompanied by thunderstorms is forecasted for parts of Maharashtra and Goa.

Northeast Monsoon and Rainfall Outlook

The IMD forecast indicates a likelihood of moderate to heavy rainfall in the northeastern states over the next week. West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, and Tripura can expect light to moderate rain, with heavier rainfall anticipated in Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, and Sikkim on Sunday and Monday. The combination of rainfall and humidity is expected to provide relief from the sweltering conditions prevalent in these regions.

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