July 22, 2011 Northeast Heat Records

US Record High Temperature Map (http://www.coolwx.com)

Based on official NWS Climate Sites in most cases, daily climate reports and NOWData tabs on the NWS websites. Should be considered unofficial until NWS issues record reports on them. Feel free to post any corrections/additions.

Best of the best

Newark, NJ 108 (All-time record)

Hartford, CT (Bradley) 103 (All-time record)

Washington, DC (Dulles) 105 (All-time record)

Salisbury, MD 102 (Unofficially ties all-time record)

Trenton, NJ 106 (Ties all-time record)

Bridgeport, CT 103 (Ties all-time record)

Best of the Rest

Portland, ME 100 (Daily record, #4 all-time)

Concord, NH 100 (Daily record)

Boston, MA 103 (Daily record, #2 all-time)

Providence, RI 101 (Daily record, #4 all-time)

Islip, NY (Long Isl) 100 (Daily record, #4 all-time)

New York City (Central Park) 104 (Daily record, #4 all-time)

New York City (JFK Airport) 103 (Daily record, #2 all-time)

New York City (LaGuardia Airport) 103 (Daily record (#3 all-time)

Scranton, PA 98 (Daily record)

Williamsport, PA 103 (Daily record, #4 all-time)

Atlantic City, NJ (Pomona) 105 (Daily record, #2 all-time)

Allentown, PA 104 (Daily record, #2 all-time)

Philadelphia, PA 103 (Daily record, #4 all-time)

Wilmington, DE 102 (Daily record #7 all-time)

Harrisburg, PA 103 (Daily record, #7 all-time)

Baltimore, MD (BWI Airport) 106 (Daily record, #2 all-time)

Baltimore, MD (Inner Harbor) 108 (Not an official record, but impressive)

Washington, DC (Reagan National) 102 (Not a record)

Wallops Island, VA 100 (Daily record, #3 all-time)

Norfolk, VA 102 (Daily record, #9 all-time)

 

A few notes about the heat. I think you can thank overnight low temps for this…temps started off incredibly warm this morning, with many areas not getting below 80 degrees. That helped lead to a very rapid warm up during the climatological hottest time of the year. This was essentially a perfect storm of heat…an anomalously strong mid-summer ridge building into areas during the peak temperatures of the year. Timing is everything, and this was timed out rather well (or probably not if you are sick of the heat already). Was it because of global warming? The answer I want to give is “no,” but the answer that is correct is that we simply do not know. Singular events are impossible to link to a warming planet because of greenhouse gases. Singular events should NOT be used as proof one way or another regarding global warming. It takes years of trends to prove the argument one way or another, and one day we’ll figure that out. For now, just accept that it’s summer and it’s hot, and try and keep cool the best you can.

One more day of excessive heat tomorrow, though I believe thunderstorms will be more scattered about, so that will help the situation some. After a cooling trend early next week, we look to see impressive, significantly hot temperatures return late next week and weekend. Though likely not quite as bad as today, there’s a lot of potential then as well to be record breaking type heat, but more on the low scale…not the all-time stuff. I sincerely believe we will see at least 1-2 more blasts of substantial heat (stronger than the usual stuff) through August before this summer starts to loosen its grip. So stay ready to keep cool!

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Tomas & Haiti? Plus Storm, Heat, and MeteoPolitics!

Wind shear and 24 hour change in the Atlantic Basin, credit: University of Wisconsin CIMMS

Tomas continues along in the Caribbean today, about 265 miles west of St. Lucia, chugging off slightly north of due west around 10 mph. Tomas bumped up to a Cat 2 storm overnight, but has since weakened, back to a minimal 75 mph category one storm. Reconnaissance aircraft visited the storm earlier and helped quantify what satellite had been showing all day. It looks pretty ragged, as some dry air and shear have begun to take their toll on Tomas. You can seeĀ  the ragged structure of Tomas here. The darker area to the west of the storm indicates the presence of at least some drier air too. The image to the left shows the current wind shear analysis in the Atlantic, as well as the trend. The red area near the hurricane symbol indicates that Tomas is in an area of enhanced shear. Assuming things gradually progress from west to east, it would appear things are only going to get more hostile for Tomas the next day or so. In fact, the model guidance suggests that the shear remains over Tomas into Tuesday, before pulling away. Provided Tomas can maintain its core and overall structure, even if it weakens into, say, a tropical storm, it will have an opportunity later Tuesday and through Wednesday to intensify, and given the water temperatures in that region, it could be explosive strengthening if the conditions are right.

In terms of the track of Tomas, while things may change some in the next day or two as the storm fluctuates in intensity,

Morning Model Guidance Spaghetti Plot of Tomas' Tracks, credit: South Florida Water Management District

you can see that most of the models track Tomas to just south of Hispaniola. After that, they generally either stall or it lift it northward. In reality, given the normal uncertainty of tropical systems, anything is possible, from Cuba to east of the Dominican Republica. Unfortunately though, Haiti looks to be right in the middle of the possibilities. And again, unfortunately, regardless of the intensity of Tomas at landfall, this is really looking like it could be a very grim situation for that country, and if you thought things couldn’t get worse in Haiti, this would be how it can. Current model projections (which generally do a poor job handling specifics of tropical system precipitation totals) are dropping 8-10″ on southern Haiti. This is really a disheartening situation to watch, and hopefully precautions are already being taken to ensure the safety of residents and relief workers.

Elsewhere…

Still watching this storm for next week. In my forecasting for California next week, it was pretty obvious the differences in the main models (Euro and GFS). The GFS cuts down the western ridge and slides it to the Lee of the Rockies on Friday/Saturday, which has almost no support from any other model or its own ensemble members.

Euro Depiction of a Mess in the East, credit: Allan Huffman's Weather Model Page: http://raleighwx.easternuswx.com/

So what it’s doing is forcing everything in the east to develop further east, and therefore not as amplified. The Euro however last night took a deeper low out of the gulf and up the Appalachians into Western NY, wrapping the possibility of at least a few inches of snow on the backside for much of the mountains of Tennessee/North Carolina, up through West Virginia, eastern Ohio, western PA, Michigan, and western NY and Ontario, along with some lake effect or lake enhanced snow on the wrap around. The European has some support from the Canadian model (which is taking a 980 mb landbomb from the Carolinas northwest into OH/IN), which is also encouraging for confidence. This morning’s verison of the Euro was a little further east, and brought the chances for snow from the mountains of NC/TN up through WV’s mountains, and perhaps some in W PA and Eastern Ohio/Western NY, as well as Ontario and northern Michigan. It has to hit a fairly narrow window for snow, but if I had to place bets right now, I’d lean on Ontario/Michigan and not much more than that at the moment. Stay tuned.

Election Day Weather

With the big midterm elections coming up, there are all sorts of anecdotes about weather and people’s voting habits. Well, we’ll test the theory again this year, but primarily in the south. It looks like areas from Houston to New Orleans up through Mississippi and into Memphis and over to Little Rock will see the worst weather in the US on Election Day (as the late week storm begins to develop). Otherwise, other than a couple showers in the Northwest and parts of Minnesota it looks dry. So no excuses to stay home…go vote.

Cali Heat

I discussed how the European model keeps the western ridge in tact. Well that ridge is going to lead to searing autumn heat in California, with Santa Ana winds possibly leading to temperatures into the mid or upper 90s here in SoCal. It looks blazing hot Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday’s record high for Downtown LA is 99 degrees, and Wednesday’s is 95 degrees. Tuesday’s looks a lot safer than Wednesday’s at the moment. I suspect we could be talking record heat for a day or two in parts of SoCal. Been a year of some ridiculous temperature extremes out here.