Hot weather ahead as plum rains depart

Summer heat and powerful typhoons are in Shanghai's forecast now that the annual plum rain season has come to an end.
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A child sleeps on the promenade at the Bund in Shanghai yesterday when the annual plum rain season ended. 

Summer heat and powerful typhoons are in Shanghai’s forecast now that the annual plum rain season has come to an end.

Yesterday marked the end of plum rains as the subtropical weather mass which had covered the region moved westward, according to the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau.

This year, plum rain season, a period marked by humid weather and intermittent showers, began in Shanghai on June 19. The season lasted only 19 days, four days shorter than average. It also brought about half as much precipitation as usual — just 134.5 millimeters — according to the weather observatory in downtown Xujiahui.

Though the plum rains are over, the unsettled weather conditions will continue, weather authorities say.

Xiaoshu, or “slight heat,” another period in the traditional Chinese calendar, arrived on July 7 and will last until July 21. The period is characterized by sultry weather, typhoons and scattered thunderstorms.

During xiaoshu, there are usually five or more “high temperature days” with temperatures reaching 35 degrees Celsius or more. Last year, the city sizzled with a total of 13 such days, including one stretch of 11 consecutive days at or above 35 degrees, meteorological records show.

Today’s weather will be sunny to cloudy, with mercury hitting 35 degrees. The high will fall slightly to 33 degrees tomorrow and 32 degrees on Wednesday and Thursday. From Friday, the city will be hit by three to five consecutive days with mercury soaring between 35 and 37 degrees, forecasters said.

Meanwhile, super typhoon Maria has intensified over the Pacific Ocean and is approaching Taiwan at speeds of between 25 to 30 kilometers per hour. The storm is expected to pass by, or make landfall on northern Taiwan Island on Wednesday morning before impacting the mainland’s coastal Zhejiang and Fujian provinces on Wednesday afternoon.

Due to Maria, Shanghai railway has suspended sales of train tickets dated from tomorrow to Thursday to some cities, including Beijing and Shenzhen.

The city’s flood control headquarters has warned officials to be prepared and ensure safety at construction sites, elevated roads, old residential complexes, and other major public venues.

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