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Winter 2024 Seasonal Outlook: Forecasts For Mauritius And Rodrigues

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The expected evolution of the 2024 winter climate in Mauritius and Rodrigues from May to August was presented yesterday afternoon by the Acting Director of the Mauritius Meteorological Services, Dr Prithiviraj Booneeady, during a press conference held at Vacoas.

At the very outset, Dr Booneeady underlined that the winter 2024 weather forecast has been prepared after careful analysis of linear regression models of the meteorological and oceanic parameters that drive the climate in the southwest Indian Ocean and climate forecast from various model products from Global Producers of Long-Range Forecast, by the technical officers of the MMS. Observed trends of meteorological parameters in the region indicate that the onset of winter 2024 will be during the first fortnight of May, he announced.

Concerning the expected rainfall over Mauritius for winter, the Acting Director of the MMS informed that initially rainfall will be close to normal and is expected to be slightly below by the end of winter. The cumulative rainfall for Mauritius will be around 600 mm which represents 90% of the Long-Term Mean. Most of the rains will be concentrated mainly over the Central Plateau, to the East and the South.

Rainfall over Rodrigues is expected to be below normal. The cumulative rainfall for winter will be around 290 mm, which represents 70% of the Long-Term Mean.

As regards the expected temperature, Dr Booneeady indicated that the day mean maximum and night mean minimum temperature will be close to normal.

Winter 2024 Seasonal Outlook - Forecast

In Mauritius, the daytime temperature will be around 23 degrees Celsius over the central plateau and 28 degrees Celsius along the coastal regions. The nighttime temperature will be around 16 degrees Celsius over the central plateau and 19 degrees Celsius along the coastal regions.

In Rodrigues, the daytime temperature will be around 24 degrees Celsius over the high grounds and 27 degrees Celsius along the coastal regions. The nighttime temperature will be around 16 degrees Celsius over the high grounds and 20 degrees Celsius along the coastal regions.

The Acting Director of the MMS, however, cautioned that due to intra-seasonal variations, on certain occasions when the Mascarenes will be under the influence of strong anticyclones, the islands may experience day temperatures below normal by 2 degrees Celsius or more. He explained that on few occasions, especially due to clear sky and calm wind conditions at night, it is likely that the minimum temperature may drop to 9 degrees Celsius in certain places in Mauritius. Over Rodrigues, minimum temperature may drop to 13 degrees Celsius over the high grounds.

Moreover, he recalled that the MMS’s new Alert System will be activated whenever extreme climatic weather conditions are expected to prevail, informing the population about the necessary precautions to be taken to ensure their own safety.

Dr Booneeady underlined that during the peak winter months mainly in July and August, the passage of strong anticyclones to the south of the Indian Ocean may cause strong pressure gradient over the Mascarenes, resulting in wind gusts that may peak to above 90 km/h in the exposed areas.

On certain occasions, he added, the sea will become very rough with heavy swells generated by the combined effect of travelling extratropical deep lows and strong anticyclones to the south of the Mascarenes.

Besides, he remarked that as highlighted by the Sixth Assessment Report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, there is an increased frequency and/or intensity of some weather and climate extremes since pre-industrial times, thus extreme weather events including moderate to heavy showers, significant variation in temperatures and strong wind conditions are very likely to occur over Mauritius and Rodrigues during winter 2024.

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