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The beginning of the rainy season is expected to arrive more than a week late in most of Japan because the seasonal rain front is stuck in the south, the Meteorological Agency said Monday.

The agency also said rainy season may end earlier than usual because of the La Nina phenomenon, in which ocean temperatures cool off the coast of Peru, warning of possible water shortages.

“There are fears of a drought due to the short period of the rainy season. But since the seasonal rain front tends to become active when La Nina occurs, it could bring heavy rain to solve the water shortage; yet people may need to be alert for disasters caused by the heavy rain,” an agency official said.

June 11 is normally the day when all areas of the country start to see more rain, except the northern part of the Tohoku region. But areas above Kyushu haven’t been getting much rain so far, the agency said.

The agency believes the delay is being caused by a high-pressure system in the Pacific Ocean that is not yet strong enough to move the seasonal rain front, which usually stagnates over Japan and causes bad weather over June and July.

As a result, northern Kyushu and the Chugoku and Shikoku regions may see the rainy season start around Wednesday or Thursday, or more than a week later than usual, the agency said.

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