The temperature in Metro Manila sizzled at 34.4 degrees Celsius on Tuesday, the hottest so far this year, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Administration (PAGASA) said.
Maralyn Medina, chief meteorological officer at the Science Garden in Quezon City, said that Metro Manila recorded 34.4 degrees Celsius temperature at around 4:10 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon, the hottest so far this year in the metropolis.
She added that at 2:00 p.m. the temperature was recorded at 33.8 degrees Celsius.
"Nagtaka kami kasi dapat pagdating ng 3 or 4 p.m. onwards baba na yun temperature kasi ang peak na mainit is between 12 noon up to 2 p.m. but tumaas pagdating ng 4 p.m.," Medina said in a phone interview.
But she added that the agency is still not announcing the official start of summer since there are many factors to consider.
Medina said that the coldest temperature was recorded at 18.1 degrees Celsius last Jan. 24, 2013 at 6:00 a.m. due to the northeast monsoon.
In another interview, weather forecaster Ricky Fabregas said the hot days might be cut short by the return of the "amihan" or the northeast monsoon or the tail end of the cold front in the coming days.
Fabregas said they have not yet declared summer in the country since the four criteria have yet to be met.
According to PAGASA, the summer season commences when the amihan is no longer present; when a high-pressure area or anti-cyclone is present; temperatures are on the rise; and the easterlies or warm air from the Pacific Ocean prevail.
Fabregas said that although the afternoons are hot, there is still a high chance for localized rains.
In its 5:00 p.m. advisory, PAGASA said the easterlies are still affecting the eastern section of the country, and the whole country will be partly cloudy with isolated rainshowers or thunderstorms.
Moderate to strong winds blowing from the east to southeast will prevail over the northern and eastern sections of Northern Luzon, and from the east over the eastern sections of Central and Southern Luzon and Visayas. The coastal waters along these areas will be moderate to rough.