First cold spell of winter to send mercury plummeting Thursday

Taipei-- Temperatures in Taiwan could begin to drop significantly on Thursday when the first cold wave of the winter arrives, with lows expected to dip to 8 to 9 degrees Celsius in the north, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said Wednesday.

The chill could be felt islandwide starting early Thursday, when lows could fall between 12 and 13 degrees in eastern Taiwan and 10 and 11 degrees in central and southern regions, according to forecasters.

While rainy weather is likely in northern and eastern Taiwan, mostly cloudy skies are expected in other areas, bureau data showed.

The weather is expected to turn drier from Friday, with sporadic showers expected only in mountainous areas in northern and eastern Taiwan, it said.

The cold spell should persist until Feb. 14, with lows rising slightly to 12 degrees in northern Taiwan, 14 degrees in central Taiwan and 16 degrees in the south, the bureau said.

According to Wu Der-rong (???), a meteorologist and adjunct associate professor of atmospheric sciences at National Central University, snow is possible in high mountains between Wednesday evening and Thursday evening.

The Fisheries Agency also urged that fishermen take precautions to keep fish from dying of the cold.

Meanwhile, air quality will be poor in central Taiwan in general and in Kaohsiung and Pingtung in southern Taiwan on Wednesday, the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) said, and it urged senior citizens and people who have heart or respiratory problems to avoid the outdoors as much as possible.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel