Thailand to see intense heat, less rainfall in summer

International |  IANS  | Published :

Bangkok, Feb 28 (IANS) Thailand is set to brace for intense heat with projected rainfall 20 per cent below normal throughout the summer this year due to the El Nino weather pattern, according to the Thai Meteorological Department (TMD).

The Southeast Asian country officially entered its hot season last week, which will continue until mid-May. Average daytime temperatures are expected to be 2 degrees Celsius higher than last year, while mercury in the northeastern and northern regions could soar to a blistering 44.5 degrees, according to data recently released by the TMD.

The kingdom's capital Bangkok reported alarming levels of heat index in some districts on Tuesday, with the reading projected to reach dangerously high levels of up to 43.6 degrees Celsius on Wednesday before jumping to 47.5 degrees on Thursday, the TMD said in a statement as quoted by Xinhua news agency report.

Governor Chadchart Sittipunt said the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) has taken preventive steps, including warning the public against rising temperatures, particularly the risk of heat stroke among vulnerable groups.

"The main cause of heat stroke is not just the high temperature but also the heat index. When the temperature is high and the humidity is also high, sweat does not evaporate from the body, leading to a state of dehydration and a high body temperature," Chadchart told a news briefing on Tuesday.

He also noted the importance of educating children about heat stroke prevention, and of putting up warning signs in schools about the heat and humidity. The BMA will also implement these measures in communities, especially for the sake of bedridden patients and the elderly.

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