Caribbean heatwave: Near-record heat expected until October

Caribbean heatwave: Near-record heat expected until October

If you think the days and nights are warm right now in the Caribbean, its unlikely the weather is going to get cooler anytime soon as near-record heat can be expected until October, particularly in August and September.  

This is according to the Barbados-based Caribbean Climate Outlook Forum (CariCOF) in its Heat Outlook for May to October, which has given its latest prediction on how hot the next three to six months will be.  

Its forecast states May to July, marking the early part of the Caribbean Heat Season in the Caribbean Islands and Belize is forecast to be noticeably hotter than usual.  

It notes intense, (near-)record nighttime and daytime heat, with increasing humidity from June to September. 

The implications for this are frequent, likely intense and possibly persistent episodes of heat stress in the vulnerable population and small livestock because of high temperature and increasing humidity through September. 

So, how many heatwaves days are expected for May to July 2024?  

The outlook says usually there are 15 to 20 heatwave days in Puerto Rico, northern Leeward Islands; 5 to 10 heatwave days in Belize and wind-sheltered areas of the Lesser Antilles.  

However it now forecasts 30 to 50 heatwave days in The Bahamas, Barbados, Trinidad and wind-sheltered areas of the Windward Islands; and likely at least 30 heatwave days in The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Martinique Saint Lucia, and Trinidad. 

Already some Caribbean islands have issued heatwave advisories.  

The Antigua and Barbuda Meteorlogical Service earlier this week said a Heat Watch is in effect from 9 am to 4:30 pm until Saturday. It warned the public that light winds and relatively high humidity will possibly allow for the heat index to rise to excessive levels resulting in dangerously hot conditions.  

Meanwhile, a Heat Alert was issued by the National Meteorological Service of Belize for May 8, which warned Belizeans that temperatures are expected to exceed 97°F. It advised residents, especially those inland, to stay hydrated and avoid outdoor activity as much as possible, especially during afternoon hours. 

On Monday, the Grenada Meteorological Services said the island was experiencing a heatwave. Monday marked the second consecutive day that with temperatures abover 31.7°C at Point Salines. A heatwave advisory was issued for 48 hours.  

  • PublishedMay 9, 2024

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