While Southwest Monsoon dominates weather talk elsewhere its the heat quotient that continues to dominate weather discussions around Chennai. Yesterday saw the IMD Observatory at Meenambakkam record 43ºC nearly 6 degrees above normal for this time of the year making it the hottest day of the year so far.
The Monsoon checked in over Southern parts of Kerala on Saturday eight days behind schedule. Today IMD is likely to confirm onset over most of Kerala & possibly up to Pondicherry latitude in the East Coast. The Bay branch remains a worry though with very slow progress being made. As on 10th June in a normal year the monsoon would have touched down over the Eastern parts of Jharkhand, Bihar & Nepal. It is still hanging around A&N Islands and the Southern parts of Myanmar. With MJO entering the Eastern Parts of Indian Ocean (Phase 3) the Bay branch will get the much needed support over the next few days.
The Low Pressure Area over the Central Parts of Arabian Sea is expected to intensify into a Depression in 24 hours time & subsequently into a Cyclonic Storm around Wednesday / Thursday as it travels in a general Northward direction. This movement could drag the monsoon onset towards the Konkan coast though the expected recurve by a few models towards Oman coast may become a spoiler.
In the meanwhile Chennai and rest of North Tamil Nadu is likely to see another hot day today too with similar trend likely for the next couple of days. City areas might see maximum temperature stay near 40 ºC while the suburbs could see 41 / 42 ºC with the southern suburbs likely to remain the hottest parts of the city. Parts of Tiruvallur, Kanchipuram, Tiruvannamalai, & Villupuram districts may see heatwave conditions with temperatures to stay nearly 5 degrees above normal in a few places.
As we often repeat the real summer for North TN including Chennai starts only when the Westerlies strengthen and the sea breeze struggles to make an impact. Models expect sea breeze to move in after 3:30 PM over the next few days making it uncomfortable afternoons during the early part of this week.