Temperatures in parts of Malaysia expected to hit 38 deg C
KUALA LUMPUR: Temperatures in parts of Malaysia are expected to hit 38 deg C at the end of this month or beginning of April, Dr Mohd Hisham Mohd Anip, director of the Meteorological Department's National Weather and Geophysics Operations Centre, said yesterday.
"In Perlis, Kedah and Perak, the temperatures are expected to reach 38 deg C even though the normal temperatures in those areas range from 32 deg C to 34 deg C," he told the New Straits Times.
"Since it's only the end of February, we may have to brace for two more months of hot weather before there is some relief, with increased showers nationwide during the inter-monsoon period at the end of April."
Dr Hisham advised people to stop open burning and exercise caution when carrying out outdoor activities.
Australia has also been hit with extreme weather. It suffered its hottest summer on record from December through February and forecasts show the southern autumn will continue to be drier and warmer than average, the government said.
"After a record hot December and January, it won't come as a surprise that this summer will be our warmest on record," said Mr Andrew Watkins, manager of long-range forecasting at the Bureau of Meteorology.
Although the final figures were not yet available, the bureau said it was already clear the average maximum and mean temperature for the three months of summer would for the first time be more than 2 deg C higher than long-term averages, reported AFP.
Rainfall was also below normal, and the bureau said it saw no let-up in a severe drought that has gripped vast areas of the country's agricultural heartland in the east and south-east for many months.
"Unfortunately, the outlook isn't giving a strong indication that we'll see a return to average or above average rainfall in many areas over the autumn period," Mr Watkins said.