The meteorological department forecasts the next two days will be hot and uncomfortable, with the maximum temperature touching 41 degree Celsius.

Peak summer days are over. But for the city's residents, there was no respite from the blistering heat on Tuesday. Residents experienced another gruelling day as hot winds blew across the city, until well into the evening.

Though the maximum temperature dropped by one degree Celsius, this did not make much of a difference. In Nungambakkam, the mercury level was 41.8 degree Celsius, while Meenambakkam recorded 42.3 degrees. Weather stations in suburbs such as Avadi and Poonamallee also registered around 42 degree Celsius.

Chennai experienced 12 hot days in May, with the temperature soaring above the 40-degree mark. Last year, the number of hot days was only five.

Monday was the hottest day of this month, with the temperature in Nungambakkam 42.5 degree Celsius and 43 degree Celsius in Meenambakkam .

Residents, who expected the temperature to drop to near-normal on Tuesday as it was cloudy in the morning, were disappointed. Within a couple of hours, the heat became intense, and the sun shone relentless and bright, through the rest of the day. Many motorists kept off the streets for most of the day, as the heat was unbearable.

The overcast sky early in the morning was due only to high humidity levels. When these levels drop, the temperature shoots up.

Officials of the Meteorological department said the delayed and weak sea breeze was leading to uncomfortable hot days. On Tuesday, the sea breeze set in only around 3.30 p.m. Those areas close to the coast such as Chepauk, Triplicane and Thiruvanmiyur are relieved of the heat about an hour earlier than the rest of the city.

Normally, the sea breeze blows up until 11.30 p.m. But as it has been weak this week, the breeze has not sustained into the night, making them uncomfortably warm.

“Chennai normally receives rainfall around this time of the year. But this year, the southwest monsoon is yet to set in neighbouring states and the temperature continues to soar,” said Y.E.A. Raj, Deputy Director General of Meteorology, Regional Meteorological Centre, Chennai.

The prolonged dry period in the coastal region has also led to many uncomfortable days, he added.

The meteorological department forecasts the next two days will be hot and uncomfortable, with the maximum temperature touching 41 degree Celsius.

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