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The day Doha sizzled at over 50A- Celsius.

DOHA PEOPLE venturing out of their air-conditioned homes, offices or vehicles felt like being burnt alive as Doha sizzled at over 50 degree Celsius on Tuesday, the hottest day not only of this season but in a decade.

Doha had recorded 49.6 degree Celsius way back on July 16, 2000, according to a Meteorology Department report released recently.

Meanwhile, the weather office has cautioned the residents that they must be careful and avoid direct contact with the sun as similar conditions would prevail on Wednesday as well.

Talking to Qatar Tribune the Head of the Forecast and Analysis Section of the Department of Meteorology Abdulla Mohamed al Mannai said, "Thermal low pressure over Gulf area coupled with the dry and hot south-westerly wind, has led to the sharp increase in temperature." While hinting at the possibility of the temperature crossing 49.5 degree Celsius between 2.30 pm and 3.30 pm on Wednesday as well, he forecast a change in the direction of the wind easing the severity of the heat.

"After 3.30 pm, the direction of the wind will shift from south-west to the north-west and north-east bringing down the temperature to 44 degree Celsius." According to the Met Office, the temperature might have crossed 50 degree Celsius in areas away from the coast.

A Met official said that areas located between the east coast and west coast as well as in the north-west and south-west of Doha might have recorded higher temperatures than in Doha.

However, a number of residents claimed that the temperature recorder in their vehicles showed 50 degree Celsius at around 5pm, well past the peak hour of 3pm.

This hints at the possibility of the peakhour temperature having crossed 50 degree Celsius in the afternoon.

It is worth mentioning here that before Monday, when mercury touched 44 degree Celsius, the maximum temperature kept hovering around 40 degree Celsius except on /for one day in June when it reached 49 degree Celsius in some areas.

According to a report of the Met Office, though June and July are the hottest months of summer in Qatar, the mercury has rarely exceeded 49.5 degree Celsius and that too only in the southern areas of the country, including Doha International Airport, Umm Said and Macainis.

According to the report, Umm Said recorded 52.2 degree Celsius and 52 degree Celsius way back in July, 2000 and May 2002 respectively whereas Macainis registered 50.6 degree Celsius in July 1996.

Besides, Doha registered 49.6 degree Celsius on July 16, 2000 whereas Dukhan recorded 50 degree Celsius on July 17, 2003.

Al Khor recorded 49.9 degree Celsius in 1999, the report added.

The report points out that the south-westerly wind and north-westerly wind help increase temperature of the air.

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Publication:Qatar Tribune (Doha, Qatar)
Date:Jul 14, 2010
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