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Weekend storms as sanfu period starts

    The plum rain belt is expected to return to the city over the weekend with showers or thundershowers, forecasters said.

    The weather this morning will be similar to yesterday, mostly overcast and cloudy.

    The plum rain belt is likely to affect the city during the late afternoon with increasing clouds. Rain will fall at night and the wet conditions will continue tomorrow.

    The rain belt will move south on Sunday and Monday with dry and cloudy weather returning.

    But from Tuesday, it will return north to dump a new round of rain on Shanghai.

    After that, the subtropical high pressure will get stronger and move northward, bringing afternoon showers and higher temperatures.

    The high will remain at 28 degrees Celsius today but drop to 25 degrees with the rain.

    Then it will bounce back from 29 to 31 between Sunday and Thursday.

    It is likely to climb to 33 and 34 on Friday and Saturday next week. The lows will be between 22 and 24 degrees.

    Shanghai will enter the hottest period of summer, sanfu, today, which will last until August 21, according to traditional Chinese calendar.

    Figures from the benchmark Xujiahui weather station between 1981 and 2010 show that the number of high-temperature days — days with a high above 35 degrees — was 15 on average from June to August. And 10 of those days were between mid-July and mid-August, the sanfu period.

    But there were still some summers with fewer or no high-temperature days during sanfu.

    The middle and late period of the 40-day sanfu in 2009 didn’t have high-temperature days, while 1999’s sanfu had no high-temperature days at all.

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