Malaysia: Scorching hot weather to persist till March

The Star 29 Jan 16;

KUALA LUMPUR: The scorching hot weather prompted by El Nino since early January is expected to persist till March.

Malaysian Meteorological Department director-general Datuk Che Gayah Ismail reminded the public against open burning and to consume plenty of water to prevent hydration.

The El Nino phenomenon is also the reason why there was no occurrence of a major flood in the country as it usually happens following heavy downpours, she told Bernama here Friday.

She said the weather in the month of December is usually more humid but monsoon activities that brought cold surges from China and Siberia have lessened, resulting in reduced rainfall in the country.

"The condition resulted in a drop in rainfall of between 20 and 60 per cent for most areas in the country rendering the weather hot and dry with temperatures rising by 0.5 to 2.0 degree Celsius," she said.

Typically during the rainy season, areas in the east coast of the peninsula, west Sarawak and northeast of Sabah would experience heavy downpours between November and January.

According to the department's records, the rainfall distribution in December last year in the interior of Pahang, Negri Sembilan, south and north of Perak, north of Kedah and Perlis was less than 200 millimetres.

Areas in the east coast had also recorded a drop of more than 20 per cent in rainfall. - Bernama

Met Dept pours hot water on cold snap prediction
The Star 31 Jan 16;

PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Meteorological Department (MetMalaysia) has dismissed talk that “extreme cold weather” is expected to hit the northern hemisphere including some parts of the country next month.

Its director-general Datuk Che Gayah Ismail said the claim was not true and the temperature would remain within the normal range throughout February.

“In fact, the statement was not from me. The lowest temperature of 16°C was actually referring to last year’s minimum temperature,” she said when contacted yesterday.

An unverified news report went viral online, predicting that Malaysia will experience cold weather during the Chinese New Year period next month.

It was also reported in that report that the temperature in some parts of peninsular Malaysia could drop to as low as 16°C due to the wind change.

The temperature is currently between an average of 23°C to 33°C.

MetMalaysia forecast last month that the weather was expected to be hotter and drier due to the El Nino phenomenon.

Temperatures in parts of the country may go up by between 0.5°C and 2°C.

Less rainfall is also expected, especially in Sabah and north Sarawak.

“The last time the country faced an El Nino phenomenon of this high intensity was in 1997 and 1998 when temperatures reached 40.1°C,” said Che Gayah.

For comparison, the average minimum weather in Cameron High­lands ranged from 14°C to 16°C.

MetMalaysia denies cold temperatures will hit country
The Star 1 Feb 16;

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Meteorological Department (MetMalaysia) has denied that cold temperatures reaching 20 degrees Celsius will hit the country, especially in Kelantan and Perak this month.

In a statement Monday, MetMalaysia said based on the minimum temperature last month, it was not expecting February to record a drop in temperature as reported in the media.

"The minimum temperature in January was generally hotter by one to two degrees Celsius.

"MetMalaysia has forecast that the same condition will persist until June.

“Generally, the temperature in Malaysia's tropical climate is between 22 degrees Celsius at dawn, and 35 degrees Celsius in the afternoon,” it said.

The Department said the increase in temperature was due to the El Nino phenomenon that caused temperatures to rise between 1.5 and 2 degrees Celsius.

MetMalaysia said it was monitoring developments and that any updates can be obtained through the hotline 1-300-22-1638, or its official website, and social media.

A newspaper reported that the peninsula, especially in Kelantan and Perak, is expected to enjoy a cool and comfortable temperature that is anticipated to drop to 20 degrees Celsius throughout February. - Bernama

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