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Today is first day of summer; longest in the year

No heatwave expected for this summer, when temperatures forecast around annual average — JMD

By Hana Namrouqa - Jun 20,2018 - Last updated at Jun 20,2018

Summer temperatures will be around the average of 32ºC in July and 33ºC in August (File photo)

AMMAN — Thursday marks the first day of summer, according to the Jordan Meteorological Department (JMD), which indicated that temperatures during the hot season are forecast to be around their annual average.

The summer solstice will occur at 1:07pm on Thursday, marking the longest day of the year with 14 hours and 15 minutes and the shortest night with 9 hours and 45 minutes, JMD director General Hussein Momani was quoted by the Jordan News Agency, Petra, as saying, adding: “On summer solstice, the sun becomes vertical over the Tropic of Cancer, 23.5 degrees north of the Equator.”

Head of weather forecasting section at the JMD, Raed Rafed, said that weather charts show that summer temperatures will be around the average of 32ºC in July and 33ºC in August.

“Short-term weather charts show that the country will not be affected by heatwaves until the end of July, while long-term weather charts show that this year’s summer temperatures will be around their annual average,” Rafed told The Jordan Times.

Although long-term seasonal weather charts do not forecast significant hot spells this summer, Rafed said that usual hot weather and high temperatures are expected.

The intensity of hot spells depends on the route of air masses, according to the JMD, which indicated that strong heatwaves that push temperatures well above their annual averages usually come from the northeastern parts of the Arabian Peninsula, originating from India.

Over the past 96 years, the capital witnessed 66 heatwaves, which happen when temperatures soar five degrees above their annual average for a period of more than three days, Rafed underscored.

The country was last affected by heatwave last year, when two hot spells hit the country in July and September, with Amman temperatures reaching a high of 39.6ºC and 40.2ºC respectively.

Nationwide, the highest temperature ever recorded in mountainous areas was in Salt in August 2010, when it reached 41.6ºC, while the highest temperature in the badia and eastern plains was registered in July 2010 when it reached 47.2ºC.

In Aqaba, the highest recorded temperature reached 47.6ºC in July 1956 and August 1959, while in the Jordan Valley it was 48.8ºC in August 2010 at the JMD station in Wadi Al Rayyan.

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