April second driest in 75 years; temps climbed over 34 degrees

The past four months have seen drier than normal conditions over much of Trinidad as previously forecasted, with both March and April being especially dry in some locations.

This is according to the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service (TTMS), as it released its preliminary assessment of the 2020 Dry Season at the end of the month of April.

The Met Office said at the climatological reference station at Piarco, record low rainfall values were observed in March and April with 9.3mm recorded in March (the 12th driest March in 75 years) and 3.1mm recorded in April, making April 2020 the second driest April on record in the 75 years since observations started at Piarco in 1946.

It noted that only April of 1947 was drier, with 1.6mm recorded.

Low rainfall levels

The Met Office said from January onward, intensification of rainfall deficiencies were observed at Piarco as the dry season progressed, with rainfall deficits moving from 12 percent to less than average in January to 33 percent, 70 percent and 95 percent less than average in February, March and April respectively.

In contrast, Tobago was relatively less dry, with much of the island observing near average, to slightly wetter than average rainfall conditions.

At the climatological reference station at Crown Point, the month of January produced rainfall that was 22 percent less than average, while the months of February, March and April produced rainfall totals that were on par average, six percent and 26 percent more than average, respectively.

The rainfall total recorded at Crown Point for April was 44.8 mm compared to the average of 38.0 mm.

Record high temperatures

The Met Office added that dry conditions observed in April, in particular, were exacerbated by very high temperatures.

Maximum temperatures at Piarco reached as high as, or above 34.0 degrees celcius on three days, including the warmest 2020 dry season maximum temperature (so far) of 34.3 degrees celcius which occurred on April 27.

Maximum temperatures reached or exceeded 33.0 degrees celcius 20 days of the month.

Temperatures in Tobago were not as warm, as the highest maximum temperatures climbed above 32.0 degress celcius on three days to peak at 32.8 degrees on April 19.

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