Instead of the promise of rains, Chennai sizzled on Thursday as Cyclone Fani is expected to make a landfall on the Odisha coast on Friday morning. Mercury in the city touched 41.5 degree Celsius in Nungambakkam, a departure of 5.6 degree Celsius, while Meenambakkam recorded 41.6 degree Celsius, a departure of 4.6 degree Celsius, according to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD).
The heatwave in the city, however, is expected to continue over the next three to four days, with weather bloggers warning that Friday could be hotter. Speaking to TNM, Srikanth of Chennai Rains explains, “The sea breeze is not setting in as the westerly winds are very strong. The cool sea breeze is unable to penetrate the westerly winds as Cyclone Fani is dragging the winds from west to east.”
Weather blogger Pradeep John, who handles the Tamil Nadu Weatherman page, posted, “As expected its sizzling hot in North Tamil Nadu with Chennai (nugambakkam) touching 41.5 C and Chennai Airport touching 42.0 C. Its one hell of a hot day. The humidity in chennai dropped to 19% and dew point temperature is just 13C. Its because of dry winds from north west. Now you know how winds makes temperature hot when it is hazy and cloudy too (sic).”
Pointing out that the weather models predict the heatwave to continue for the next few days, Srikanth says, “The heatwave is likely to continue until the cyclone makes landfall.” However, he adds, “Summer in Chennai starts when the westerlies set in. The winds have not completely changed from west to east. But a cyclone in the Arabian Sea or the Bay of Bengal usually herald a change in the winds. So, this is probably the start of summer.”
But it’s not only Chennai, other parts of the state barring Coimbatore and Tiruppur will also see temperatures cross 40 degree Celsius. The Vellore-Tiruttani belt was expected to touch 43-44 degree Celsius on Thursday, read Tamil Nadu Weatherman’s post.