2020 Dry Season Declared

The Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service (TTMS) is officially declaring that the 2020 Dry Season is on its way as there is evidence to suggest that the region has transitioned into a drier state.

According to the TTMS’ release, a number of climatic features that are used to indicated the onset of the Dry Season are present.

The country can still expect to see rainfall episodes during the dry season but not with the frequency and quantity that occurs during the dry season.

Dry Season 2020 Outlook & Key Messages from the TTMS

  • Overall, the prediction for the 2020 Dry Season is for near normal dry season conditions with near-average rainfall totals from January to March while slightly wetter than average conditions are predicted for April to May.
  • Near-average dry conditions are still likely to be impactful since near average rainfall in the dry season often does not mean substantial rainfall totals.
  • The 2020 dry season totals are expected to range between 180-600 millimeters
  • Usually, February and March are the driest months of the year. A similar pattern is expected for 2020.
  • The outlook also calls for March to May 2020 to produce one or two short-duration hot spells.

Context of the 2020 Dry Season Relative to Rainfall During 2019

  • 2019 was unusually dry with significantly less rainfall than average in relation to the annual long-term mean observed in Trinidad and Tobago.
  • After unusually dry conditions during the 2019 dry season when rainfall amounts ranging from 37% to 59% below average in Trinidad and 20% to 26% below average in Tobago were observed, rainfall deficits continued during the 2019 wet season.
  • Rainfall totals for the 2019 wet season were 9% ti 18% below average in Trinidad and 5% to 10% below average in Tobago. The 2019 wet season was the 9th driest wet season in 74 years (since 1946).
  • Overall, annual rainfall for 2019 was 14% to 25% below average in Trinidad and 6% to 13% below average in Tobago, which resulted in 2019 being the third driest year on record since observations began in 1946 at Piarco. Only 1957 and 1959 were drier.
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