Wed, Jul 16, 2003 - Page 1 News List

Hot spell expected to continue until end of the week

RECORDBREAKER After reaching 37.8℃ on Monday, temperatures are likely to climb as an area of high pressure lingers over the country

By Chiu Yu-tzu  /  STAFF REPORTER WITH AGENCIES

A high-pressure system hovering over the country could generate record temperatures during the next few days, the Central Weather Bureau said yesterday.

Monday was the hottest day of the year so far, with a high of 37.8℃ recorded in Taipei. According to the bureau, it was also the sixth highest temperature ever recorded in Taiwan.

The record was set on July 31, 1921, at 38.6℃. Other hot years were 1976 (38.2℃), 1998 (38.1℃ and 37.9℃) and 1950 (38.0℃).

On Monday and yesterday, average temperatures in various parts of Taiwan exceeded 34℃. Yesterday afternoon, the temperature in Taipei City reached 37.7℃.

Weather forecasters said yesterday that the temperature could keep climbing in the next few days.

Officials said heat emitted from air conditioners and cars would make it hotter in crowded cities, particularly Taipei, which is located in a basin.

Weather forecasters said that after Friday, afternoon showers in central and southern Taiwan could be expected as the high-pressure system weakens.

While people crank up their air conditioners in search of relief from the heat, state-run Taiwan Power Company came under fire for charging consumers higher rates during the summer.

Household users are charged higher rates from June to September. The summer rates are calculated depending on consumption and are between 1.1 times to 1.27 times rates at other times of the year.

Consumer groups have been pressing for Taipower to change the way it charges customers during the summer.

They have suggested the company introduce penalty rates for high consumption and offer off-peak rates to household consumers.

Only industry users are currently offered off-peak rates in the evening.

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