(TRINIDAD EXPRESS) – IT was a true ‘crop season’ night, that sent shivers across the country but especially Trinidad.
Trinidad and Tobago on Sunday night into yesterday morning saw its coldest temperatures for the month of January in a decade, the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service (TTMS) said on Monday.
The Met Service’s statement confirmed what many had speculated, according to social media like Facebook, as people questioned whether the low temperatures in their areas were unusual.
In an official statement, the TTMS said yesterday, “Trinidad experienced a record-breaking cold night when the minimum temperature cooled to 18.3oC at Piarco during the pre-dawn hours of January 30, 2023.”
The TTMS said this was due to “colder air from the north encroaching onto T&T”, where ” the winds were mostly calm, with pre-existing very dry conditions and almost cloud-free skies for most of the night”.
“This is the lowest temperature recorded at Piarco for January during the last decade, since 2012,” the TTMS said.
The lowest minimum temperature on record at Piarco, is 16.1oC, which occurred on the nights of January 21 and 30, 1964, followed by 16.4oC on the night of January 28, 1976, it stated.
This is in spite of a “slow start to the cool season” in T&T, the statement from TTMS’ communications officer, Camille Hall-Graham said.
Colder nights ahead?
According to the TTMS, “the first half of January had cool temperatures in the mid to lower 20s, eventually dropping to low 20’s during the second half of January and culminating during this last week with morning temperatures below 20 oC”.
“There is a high probability that cool nights will continue into the first week of February and possibly drop lower than 18.3oC,” the Met Service advised.
It said “individuals who are susceptible to low temperatures and who experience respiratory ailments must be proactive at this time and wear warm and/or extra clothing, especially during this coming week”.
The TTMS said generally, the coldest night in any given year in T&T depends on individual weather systems, present at the particular time.
“However, this is always based on a seasonal cycle; where on average for much of Trinidad and Tobago, the coldest nights occur during December to February, with January tending to be on average, cooler than the other months,” the statement said.
On occasions, the month of March has also produced sub-20 minimum temperatures, the TTMS said.
The TTMS noted it was for these and other reasons that its 2023 Dry Season Rainfall and Temperature Outlook had indicated, “Few nights during January and February are likely to be relatively cold with minimum temperatures falling below 20.0oC”.