NEW DELHI: It was the hottest May day in Delhi in 18 years on Tuesday. The Safdarjung Observatory, which provides representative figures for the city, recorded a maximum temperature of 46 degrees Celsius. According to the India Meteorological Department (IMD), the last time mercury at the Safdarjung weather station touched the 46-degree-mark was on May 19, 2002.
Palam scorched at 47.6 degree Celsius — six degrees above normal — equalling the previous record of May 18, 2010 for the area. The weather stations at Lodhi Road and Aya Nagar recorded maximum temperatures at 45.4 degrees and 46.8 degrees respectively.
In large areas, a ‘heat wave’ is declared when the maximum temperature is 45 degrees for two consecutive days and ‘severe heat wave’ is when the mercury touches 47 degrees for two days on the trot. In small areas like Delhi, heat wave is declared if the temperature soars to 45 degrees Celsius even for a day. Some respite from the blistering heat is expected on Thursday due to a fresh western disturbance and easterly winds at lower levels. Dust storm and thunderstorm is likely over the NCR on Friday-Saturday.
Dust storm and thunderstorm with winds gusting up to 60 kmph is likely over NCR on Friday and Saturday, said Kuldeep Srivastava, head, IMD’s regional forecasting centre