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Warning for summer storms

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Cyprus is bracing for a summer downpour as local storms are expected across the island on Monday, warned the Met Office.

A yellow weather warning was issued by the Met Office warning of heavy rain and thunderstorms after unsettled weather hit the Paphos coast earlier Monday.

Heavy rains hit Paphos coastal areas at around 6.30 a.m., with the Met Office saying that the weather system would move as the day progresses.

The storm warning came into effect at 11 a.m. on Monday and until 6 p.m.

Weather observers, KitasWeather said, “atmospheric conditions during the day will support the occurrence of single cell thunderstorms (Pulse Severe)”.

Often called “popcorn” convection, single-cell thunderstorms are small, brief, weak storms that grow and die within an hour or so.

They are typically driven by heating and the rise of humidity on a summer afternoon. Single-cell storms may produce brief heavy rain and lightning.

The weather observer warned of the possibility of strong winds and hail stones up to 2cm in diameter.

“Locally, due to the intensity and persistence of the storms over certain areas, rain amounts are likely to reach or exceed 45 mm in 1 hour or 55 mm in 3 hours inland and on higher ground,” warned the observer.

He warned of possible mudslides and overflowing rivers and streams, while the fire hazard is high as lighting could spark fires.

On Monday, maximum temperatures will rise to around 35°C inland, 30-31°C on the coast and 25°C in the higher mountains, which is the normal level for this time of year.

Night temperatures will drop to 22°C inland, 24°C on the coasts and 17°C in the higher mountains.

Isolated showers and possible brief storms are expected again on Tuesday afternoon in the mountains and on the west and north coasts.

Tuesday will also see temperatures rise once more to above average for the season, reaching 38°C inland, 32-34°C on the coast and 28°C in the higher mountains.

The island is cooling following a summer of extremely high temperatures.

On August 14, the island saw its third hottest day ever, with temperatures reaching 45.6°C in the capital.

The island has suffered prolonged heatwaves since mid-July– the hottest month on record.

It was not just the hottest July ever but the hottest month since the weather station in Athalassa Nicosia was established in 1983.

Temperatures last month hit a maximum of 44.6°C on July 14.

Cyprus’ highest recorded temperature was 46.2°C on September 4, 2020, in Nicosia.