The Telegraph
Wednesday , January 29 , 2014
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Wind & chill for 48 hours

The North Wind has again picked up steam following a spell of rising mercury, ushering in a chilly phase that the Met office said would last at least till Thursday.

The strong breeze, blowing uninterrupted since Monday night, has dragged down both day and night temperatures.

Tuesday’s maximum temperature was 21.9 degrees Celsius, five notches below normal and down 1.1 degrees from Monday’s. The minimum, too, fell a degree to 13 degrees Celsius, two degrees below normal.

“An icy breeze was blowing on Monday night when I was returning home from a wedding in Dum Dum. I was wearing a cardigan and regretted not carrying a shawl as well. I could have used the shawl to guard my head and face against the wind,” said Sumitra Roy Chowdhury, a resident of Cornfield Road in south Calcutta.

Meteorologists attributed the cold feeling to the speed and intensity of the wind.

When the wind is strong, the temperature felt by humans, called real feel temperature, is a couple of notches lower than the thermometer reading.

According to meteorologists, the Northerly was blowing at times between 10 and 15 kmph. “If the Celsius reading is 13 degrees, the real feel temperature will be 10 or 11 when the wind is blowing at 10-15 kmph,” said a meteorologist.

“At the moment there is no weather system that can come in the way of the Northerly. So, the wind is blowing strong and will continue that way. The wintry feeling is here to stay at least for the next 48 hours,” said Gokul Chandra Debnath, the director, India Meteorological Department, Calcutta.

The wind has gained momentum also because a Western Disturbance over Jammu and Kashmir has just cleared.

“When a Western Disturbance blows away after causing snow or rain, freezing winds rush in and blow across the breadth of the country to Calcutta and its surroundings,” explained a scientist at India Meteorological Department, Delhi.

This season, each phase of chill lasted only for a couple of days as one weather system or other would either suck the cold North Wind away or load the air with moisture that would block the flow.

Weather experts said that since winter in Calcutta is approaching its end, the mercury will start rising once the Northerly subsides.

The wind is likely to die down from Friday, when another Western Disturbance is likely to hit Jammu and Kashmir.