Hot weather set to fry Laos again

patuxay-evening

Despite the pleasant conditions of the past few days the weather bureau is predicting the hot weather will return to affect local people again this month.

Temperatures are predicted to reach around 37 to 38C from May 7-12.

People have been told to be prepared for tropical storms as well, which usually occur at this time of year.

An increase in low pressure is the major factor causing the heat to spread to many parts of the country including Vientiane and the central provinces, according to Head of the Aeronautical Meteorology Division of the Meteorology and Hydrology Department, Mr Vandy Douangmala.

“There will be rain, especially at night and it will be hot during the day time; therefore people should be cautious with what they eat and when commuting,” he said, adding that working outdoors should be avoided during storms as four people rece ntly were hit by lightning strikes.

The recent heat of over 39C caused suffering not only for humans but also to animals.

The department received reports that some crops were damaged as a result of the prolonged heat that is not common for Laos.

According to the Ministry of Health, typhoid, diarrhoea, food poisoning and dysentery have increased by two thirds during this hot season.

The constant heat that continued for many days before and after Lao New Year is unusual for Lao people as it usually rains during this time.

The weather bureau emphasised the public should not only pay attention to the heat but also to tropical storms that have already occurred in the south and the north in Xayaboury province.

Tropical storms have been happening more frequently in Laos due to variations in the weather as well as changes in climate patterns.

“Tropical storms have become more frequent and stronger. This phenomenon warns Lao people to be alert to cope with the changes in the weather,” Mr Vandy said.

He said commuters should be patient and not travel when there was heavy rain and storms.

Commuters should also be careful when travelling long distances as their vehicles’ engines may overheat.

According to Mr Vandy, elderly people should also try to keep themselves cool in the shade or with a fan or air conditioning to avoid collapsing. Parents have been warned not to leave their children unattended inside hot cars.

 

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Vientiane Times, 
May 06, 2014
Translation: Vathida Phonekeo