March unseasonably warm

With the northeast monsoon over southern China being generally weaker than normal for most of the time in the month, March was much warmer than usual, the Hong Kong Observatory said today.   The monthly mean maximum temperature was 25 degrees Celsius, 3.1 degrees above the normal figure and the highest on record for March.   The monthly mean temperature of 21.5 degrees Celsius and monthly mean minimum temperature of 19.2 degrees Celsius were also the second and the sixth highest on record for the month.   A total rainfall of 92.7mm was recorded in March, about 23% above the normal figure.   The accumulated rainfall for the first three months of the year was 265.3mm, about 80% above normal for the same period.   A cold front moved across the coast of Guangdong on March 7 morning. It was also rather cool the following morning with the temperature dropping to 15 degrees Celsius, the lowest of the month.   Due to the moderation of the northeast monsoon, the local weather improved gradually with more sunshine and temperatures rising on the last two days of the month. The temperature recorded in the afternoon on March 31 rose to a maximum of 29.3 degrees Celsius, the highest of the month.