Review of Regional Weather Conditions for First Fortnight of May 2019
1. Review of Regional Weather Conditions for First Fortnight of May 2019
1.1 Under inter-monsoon conditions, the prevailing winds over the equatorial region were mostly light and variable in direction over the past fortnight. Over the northern ASEAN region, there were anomalous westerly winds (Figure 1).
1.2 There were scattered showers over the region in the first half of May (Figure 2), with the exception of Myanmar where generally dry weather prevailed. Myanmar and the northern parts of Lao PDR and Thailand received below-average rainfall, which could have been due to dry air from the Bay of Bengal that persisted over these areas early in the month. Many areas along the equatorial region (including southern parts of Peninsular Malaysia, Sumatra, and Borneo) received below-normal rainfall (Figure 3), and this could in part be attributed to the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) activities from Phase 5 to Phase 8 during the fortnight.
1.3 In the first half of May, although there was a slight cooling of the sea surface, the sea surface temperatures of the equatorial Pacific Ocean remained warmer than average. There was no consistent coupling between the sea surface temperatures and the atmosphere, indicating that full-fledged El Niño conditions have not developed.