If the warm, misty weather in Hong Kong over the past two days made it seem like it’s time to put away your winter clothes, you had better think again. According to the Hong Kong Observatory, temperatures in the city are expected to drop drastically towards the end of next week. Hongkongers enjoy warmest first day of Lunar New Year in 11 years The weather forecaster noted that temperatures will range from 14 degrees to 18 degrees on Thursday and Friday and a couple of degrees lower in the New Territories. “Towards the middle and latter parts of the week, starting from Wednesday until Friday, the northeast monsoon will affect us, bringing us colder weather,” Observatory scientific officer Chong Sze-ning said on Saturday. Meanwhile, cloudy skies are expected over the next few days and stronger winds will follow in the middle of the week with temperatures forecast to range from 17 to 24 degrees Celsius. Hong Kong Observatory issues second frost warning as cold snap continues “It will still be humid in the morning and at night in the following couple of days. There will be sunny intervals during the day on Monday and Tuesday, while it will be cloudy with a few rain patches at first on Wednesday,” Chong said. It will turn dry and cold before becoming slightly warmer again on Saturday and Sunday as the northeast monsoon moderates. On Wednesday, the Centre for Health Protection warned of the high level of local seasonal influenza cases around the Lunar New Year holiday. It also urged travellers to pay attention to bird flu and other infectious diseases during the holiday season both locally and overseas. Hong Kong on alert after China confirms world’s first human case of H7N4 bird flu Hospital Authority statistics showed that from the start of the current winter flu season on January 7 to February 14, 174 people had died, including two children, as a result of 2,300 severe cases among all ages. On the first day of the Lunar New Year holiday, 5,209 people visited accident and emergency services at public hospitals citywide, with 918 admitted to medical wards. The overall citywide bed occupancy rates in medical wards stood at 97 per cent as the city experienced the warmest first day of the Lunar New Year in 11 years on Friday. What you need to know about this year’s unusual winter flu surge in Hong Kong Meanwhile, the beginning of the Year of the Dog saw the mercury soar to 24.8 degrees, with areas such as Happy Valley, Kowloon City and Sha Tin topping out at 27 degrees. That marked the second hottest first day of the Lunar New Year since official records began in 1947 while the highest temperature was 25.3 degrees, on February 18, 2007.