Mercury in Taiwan could plunge down to 8 degrees on Thursday

Continental cold air mass to send temperatures in Taiwan plummeting down to as low as 8 degrees Celsius as soon as Thursday

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CWB map of surface temperatures in Taiwan.

CWB map of surface temperatures in Taiwan.

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- A cold front headed toward Taiwan has been upgraded to a strong continental cold air mass and is expected to arrive in Taiwan on Thursday (March 8) causing temperatures to drop to as low as 8 degrees Celsius, according to the Central Weather Bureau (CWB).

After midday yesterday (March 5), areas from central Taiwan to the north saw a dramatic change in the weather. After a cold front arrived last night and under the influence of a northeastern monsoon, temperatures in northern and eastern Taiwan dropped significantly.

Today (March 6) central and northern Taiwan will see lows of 15 to 16 degrees. Though southern and central Taiwan will not see the mercury plunge by the same amount, residents are advised to beware of large temperatures differences between night and day.

By Thursday, expected low temperatures for central to northern Taiwan have been revised down from 11 degrees to 8 degrees and are not anticipated to rise again until Monday (March 12). The CWB also issued a "Strong Wind Advisory (over land)" for all 18 of Taiwan's counties and cities as the next cold front approaches.

CWB forecaster Kuan Hsin-ping (官欣平) said that as the continental cold air mass hits Taiwan the mercury will start to plunge, with temperatures reaching their lowest over the weekend. The affects of radiative cooling will cause temperatures in northern Taiwan to dip to 11 degrees, while eastern Taiwan could see 10 degrees and open areas could plunge down to 8 or 9 degrees.

Kuan said the continental cold air mass is dry, so there may be relatively more sunshine, despite the frigid temperatures. Starting from next Monday temperatures will gradually start to rise.