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Easterly waves to drive rain in South

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Vinson Kurian

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 14

Contrary to forecast, a `low' has failed to show up in the Bay of Bengal for the second day running, but the southern peninsula will continue to receive showers from passing easterly waves.

The ongoing rainfall activity will continue during the next 48 hours, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD) forecasts. This is expected to grow in intensity after Thursday, in tune with the strengthening of an easterly wave.

There has lately been a lull in the rain over southern India and Sri Lanka, notes Mr Jim Andrews of AccuWeather.com. He had earlier mentioned about the potential of a tropical depression (even cyclone) that could have possibly fired up the rain activity.

"Looking at the satellite imagery, it is hard for me to pinpoint anything looking depression-like, although there are clearly some torrential tropical rains within the field.

"Still, the potential for some kind of weak low pressure and an outburst of heavy rain (Sri Lanka or eastern Tamil Nadu) is strongly hinted on numerical forecast models," Mr Andrews said.

UNDER WATCH SIGNS

The US Fleet Numerical Meteorology and Oceanography Centre (FNMOC) has put extreme southwest Arabian Sea under watch for signs of disturbed weather.

To the other side of the peninsula, warming of the seas has not taken place to the desired extent, given the persistent cloudiness and frequent rain over the past week. This rules out the setting up of an enabling environment for weather-creating systems to spin up over the sea.

This may have prevented any feeble remnant of the erstwhile typhoon Cimaron, drifting in from the South China Sea, from making any impression on the Bay waters.

According to the latest reports, Cimaron's successor, Tropical Storm Chebi, was also breaking apart over the South China Sea. Chebi had roared into the Philippine coast as a Category-4 typhoon, but started steadily losing in intensity after crossing land and later sliding into South China Sea.

RAINS LIKELY

Rain or thundershowers are likely at many places over coastal Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry and at a few places over Kerala, Lakshadweep, Coastal Andhra Pradesh, the rest of Tamil Nadu and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Mainly dry weather is likely over the rest of the region outside Rayalaseema and south interior Karnataka where isolated rain or thundershowers are likely.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated November 15, 2006)
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