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Today in New York Weather History: February 2

 

1948 (Monday)

Today's seasonably cold high of 37° was the only day between Jan. 23 and Feb. 7 with an above-freezing high temperature.  With the exception of today, the average high/low during this extended period of frigid weather was 26°/12°.  (And 8.7" of snow fell.)

1953 (Monday)

Today was the second, and last, day of this mild winter with a sub-freezing high; the high/low was 29°/14°.  (A typical winter has 18 days with highs of 32° or colder.)  It came the day after the high was 52°.  

1955 (Wednesday)

The biggest snowfall of the winter, 3.6", began shortly after midnight and continued thru mid-afternoon.  The temperature fell throughout the day, from 28° to 10° just before midnight.

 

Weather_snowflakes

 

1959 (Monday)

The morning of low of 7° was the coldest reading of the winter.

1961 (Thursday)

The morning low of -2° was the first below zero reading in Central Park since February 1943.  It came at the tail end of a record-setting sixteen-day streak of days with high temperatures below freezing that began on Jan. 19.

1973 (Friday)

Rain that started yesterday evening continued thru early evening today, coming down heavily between 9 AM-5 PM.  The 2.98" that fell today (3.19" when yesterday's rainfall is included) was a record for the date, and the second highest amount for any day in February.  The precipitation began as a cold rain, but by the time it ended the temperature had risen into the upper 50s.

 

Weather_rainy_day

 

1976 (Monday)

An incoming mass of Arctic air caused a flash freeze at around 4 AM as the temperature fell from 45° shortly after midnight to 17° at 7 AM, and 10° by 11 AM.  Half an inch rain fell before changing to snow which accumulated one inch in Central Park between 6-8 AM (Newark Airport reported 2.4").  Although the accumulation wasn't significant, when combined with the icing over of rain-soaked pavement and the gusty winds (clocked at 35-50 mph), area airports were forced to shut down during the morning. 

This sharp drop in temperature happened 100 years to the date of another 35-degree drop in temperature (46° to 11°).

1985 (Saturday)

Light snow fell throughout the day and accumulated 4.3".  This was the third snowfall of four-inches+ so far this winter.  And one more would follow in a few days.

 

Weather_artsy_snowflakes

 

1989 (Thursday)

Between Jan. 6 and today temperatures were ten degrees above average.  No snow fell during this four-week period.   

1993 (Tuesday)

Like the winter of 1959, this morning's low of 7° was the coldest reading of the winter.

2004 (Monday)

Today was the 28th day in a row with colder than average temperatures.  During this four-week period temperatures were 10 degrees below normal.  20 of the days had highs of 32° or colder, there were eight days with lows in the single digits, and 17.3" of snow fell.

 

Clipart_winter

 

2013 (Saturday)

Today's high was 29°, the first time in 13 years that the high on Groundhog Day was 32° or colder.  

2014 (Sunday)

Today's high of 56° would be the mildest reading of the month (the month's coldest temperature would occur at the end of the month).  And fears that today's Super Bowl game in northern New Jersey would be played in cold and/or snowy conditions were allayed as the game-time temperature was in the upper 40s.  Tomorrow's weather, however, would be very different as winter returned with a vengeance.

 

Superbowl.xvliii

 

2015 (Monday)

A nasty winter storm brought snow, sleet and freezing rain for much of the daytime hours, and then Arctic air blew through during the evening, dropping the temperature into the mid-teens by midnight (with wind chills around zero degrees).  Precipitation that began as rain shortly before midnight on the 1st ended as snow during the afternoon today, with a total accumulation of 5.3".  A considerable amount of sleet and freezing rain hampered the morning commute.  This and three other snowfalls in the past ten days brought 19.7" of snow.

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Old Man Winter A No-Show As January 2023 Becomes NYC's Mildest January

 

Warm january

 

You might say that January 2023 had a January thaw that lasted for the entirety of the month, resulting in New York's mildest January on record (0.3 degrees warmer than Jan. 1932).  Temperatures were 9.8 degrees above average, with every day being milder than average.  It joined December 2015 as the only two months to have this distinction.  Average high/low was 49°/38°.  (The high was comparable to Nashville's average high in January, the average low was comparable to Atlanta's.)

 

On average, January is 5.4 degrees colder than December, but about once every five years it's warmer than December - 2023  was one of these years as January was five degrees milder than December.  Only three other Januarys have been more than five degrees milder than the preceding December: Jan. 1990 was 15.5 degrees milder than Dec. 1989 (41.4° vs. 25.9°); Jan. 1911 was 6.3 degrees warmer (36.3° vs. 30.0°); and Jan. 2006 was 5.3 degrees milder (40.9° vs. 35.6°).

 

After December ended with three days in a row that were ten or more degrees above average, the streak continued for the first six days of January (the January portion of the streak was 17 degrees above average).  It wasn't until 1/14 that a reading of 32° or colder occurred; only Jan. 2005 had a later date for this first cold reading (occurring one day later).

 

Chart - longest streaks of above average temps
 

The month had 14 days with highs of 50° or warmer; and 15 days were ten or more degrees above average.  The mildest reading was 66° (the only day in the 60s).  And only three days had highs chillier than 40°, with the coldest high being 38°.  Just four days had lows of 32° or colder (21 days is the January average).  The coldest reading was 28°, which is the mildest reading to be the coldest for any January.  (The previous record was 25° in 1937.)

 

The most above average day was 1/4, twenty-three degrees above average (high/low of 66°/49°), and since there were no days below average, the least above average day was on 1/14, with a high/low of 38°/31°, two degrees above average.

 

Jan. 31 was the 35th consecutive day with an above average mean temperature, breaking the previous record of 34 days during the winter of 2015-16 (Dec. 1-Jan. 3). 

 

Besides the consistent above average readings, January had no measurable snow (average amount is about nine inches); but there were traces reported on three days.  It tied 2008 and 1933 for being the second least snowy January (Jan. 1890 reported no snow, not even a trace). 

 

With no measurable snow falling in either November or December, Central Park on 1/29 broke the 1973 record for the latest date in a winter without seeing any measurable snow (the first snow finally arrived in the pre-dawn hours of 2/1 when 0.4" accumulated).  

 

Finally, the month's total precipitation of 4.38" was very similar to January 2022's 4.29", about three-quarters of an inch above average.  (However, last January's precipitation included 15.3" of snow.)  Much of the rain, 3.13", fell in the eight-day period from the 19th to the 26th; the biggest rainstorm produced 1.34" on 1/25-26.

 

Chart - 5 mildest januarys in nyc-chart 1

 Chart - 5 mildest januarys in nyc-chart 2

 

One observation about the five mildest Januarys is that if Jan. 1932 didn't have a high/low of 33°/24° on the last day of the month it would likely still  be the mildest January as the first 30 days of the month had an average temperature of 43.7°, 0.2 degrees milder than Jan. 2023.  (January 2023 missed meeting the same fate as Jan. 1932 by one day as below average temperatures arrived on Feb. 1.)

 

Here are previous January recaps (no recap was published for Jan. 2016).

2022

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2015

2014No winter


 


2023 Weather Highlights in New York

 

2023

 

JANUARY

1 - Temperatures were nearly as mild as a year ago (high/low of 55°/49°) but this year differed as the day featured sunny skies. 

6 - This was the ninth day in a row with a mean temperature 10 degrees or more above average, the longest such streak since another one of nine days in December 2015 (there was a 10-day streak in October 1990).  The average high/low during this streak was 56°/46°,  sixteen degrees above average.  And although  this was the last day of the streak, tomorrow would still be well above average (+7 degrees).

14 - For the first time this year the temperature fell to 32°.  Only 2005 started with a longer streak, with its first reading of 32° or colder happening on 1/15.  This was also the 18th day in a row with above average temperatures.

16 - This morning's low of 28° would be the coldest reading of the month -  the mildest coldest reading of any January on record, breaking the previous record of 25° in January 1937.  (January 2023 would become the mildest January on record.)

29 - The winter of 1973's record for latest date of the first measurable snowfall was broken today - and it would continue to be broken into February.  (The average winter in Central Park has 14.2" of snowfall by the end of January.)

 

FEBRUARY

1 - At long last Central Park had its first measurable snow of the winter as 0.4" accumulated in the pre-dawn hours.  This is the longest NYC had to wait for this event (the previous record was 1/29 during the winter of 1973).  Not only was today the end of the City's record snowless streak, it was also the end of its record 35-day streak with above average mean temperatures. Today was 2 degrees colder than average (high/low of 38°/26°).  And, finally, this morning's low was the coldest reading since the day after Christmas (January's coldest low was just 28°).

 

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December 2022 Weather Recap: Rainy Month Ends With Wild Temperature Swings

 


Rollercoaster

 

December 2022 was the rainiest month of the year and also featured the coldest reading of all of 2022; this reading of 7° was the coldest temperature in December since 1989.  The month's s other stand-out weather story unfolded during its last nine days when there were wild swings in temperature.  Overall, the month's average temperature was 0.6 degrees below average (average high was just about average, while the average low was a degree below average.).

 

From 12/24 to 12/30 temperatures swung from 25 degrees below average (7° on 12/24) to 21 degrees above average (62° on 12/30).  But the wildest swing was on 12/23 when the mercury plunged 50 degrees between 4 AM and midnight, from 58° to 8°.  This was the greatest daily change in temperature on record (breaking a 101-year record, of 48 degrees in March 1921).

 

This was just the fourth December to be the wettest month of a year (the other years were 1957 <5.26">; 1973 <"9.98">; and 2019 <7.09">).  Although the amount of precipitation measured, 5.83", was 1.45" above average (making it the 20th wettest December on record), it was about three inches less than the average amount of a year's wettest month. 

 

Three rainstorms in December produced more than an inch of rain.  The last of them, on 12/22-23, produced the most, with 2.06" measured.  Much of the rain (1.33") came down in an hour when a blast of Arctic air collided with a fast-moving coastal storm in the pre-dawn hours of 12/23. 

 

Although a typical December averages nearly five inches of snow, this December had no measurable snow (LGA and Newark, however, had 0.4" and 0.1", respectively).  This was the 21st December with no snow and the 14th in which neither November or October had measurable snow (the previous time this happened was in 2015).

 

December had two days with lows in the 50s, which was the most such days since Dec. 2015 (the mildest December on record), which had 11.  This December also had seven days with highs of 55° or warmer, which was one less than Dec. 2021 (which was 4.3 degrees above average) and one more than 2020 (which was 1.7 above average).

 

Christmas Eve was sunny and bitterly cold (high/low of 15°/7°, with sub-zero wind chill) while one week later New Years Eve was mild (high/low of 55°/50°) and foggy with showers.  Christmas Day was sunny and cold (28°/14°) but relatively bearable compared to Christmas Eve.

 

Here are December recaps from the previous seven years:

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

 

 

 

 

       


A History of Biggest & Smallest Swings in Daily Temperatures in New York City

 

Kidsonswings

 

The range in daily temperature in Central Park, also known as diurnal variation, is typically 14 degrees, and ranges from 11 degrees in December and January, to 17 degrees in May.  However, variations by individual days generally range between five and thirty degrees.  Variations are affected by atmospheric conditions such as humidity, cloud cover, passage of cold/warm fronts, wind direction, and precipitation.

 

On Dec. 23, 2022 mild air drawn up the coast by a fast-moving coastal storm crashed into a strong Arctic front moving southeastward, resulting in a drop in temperature from 58° to 8°.  This 50-degree plunge established a new record for greatest temperature drop of any calendar date, breaking the previous record of a 48-degree nosedive more than 100 years earlier, on March 28, 1921.  (That drop, however, is more impressive because it happened in just 10 hours while 2022’s drop took twice as long.)

 

Drops in temperature of 40 degrees or more in a day are infrequent, with just 19 such instances reported since 1869 (about once every seven years).  However, this year’s was the first drop of 40+ degrees of the century; the previous occurrence was on Dec. 22, 1998.  (Oddly enough, 1962 and 1990 each experienced two of these drops.)

 

At the other end of the spectrum are daily variations of, one, two, or three degrees.  There have been only seven instances of days with a one-degree change (in other words, happening once every generation).  The last time was on Dec. 14, 1996 (the high/low was 40°/39°).  Days with variances of two degrees occur, on average, once every two years (most recently on May 13, 2018 when the high/low was 54°/52°).  And an average year sees one or two days with three-degree variations (most recently on Jan. 28, 2022 when the high/low was 32°/29°).

 

Most of the big daily swings in temperature have occurred between January and May. For the purposes of this analysis I chose changes of 33 degrees or more as the qualifier.  Swings of this magnitude have occurred nearly 200 times (thru 2022), an average of 1.3 days per year.  1990 has had the most - seven days.  (Sixteen years have had no such days, including three in a row from 1982 to 1984.)

 

By month, the smallest difference between the average high and low occurred in November 1977, when it was only 8.4 degrees (high of 51.5°/low of 43.1°).  The greatest difference between the high/low was 21.6 degrees in May 1941 (high of 75.5°/low of 53.9°).

 

Half of the months with variations less than 11 degrees have occurred since 2001, while just 20% of variations greater than 18 degrees have occurred in this century (the last time was in May 2015 when there was a 19.8 degree variation). This is likely a function of global warming, as overnight temperatures have risen at a faster rather than high temperatures.

 

Although daily temperature variations of two or three degrees occur just a couple of times each year, in 1970 there were five such occurrences in a fifteen-day period, between Dec. 11-25.

 

Finally, the most instances of a variation of 33+ degrees by date have occurred on April 19 and April 25, both which have had it happen six times.  April 25th's include the consecutive years of 1960, 1961 and 1962.

 

 Chart - biggest temp changes - as of dec 2022 Chart - days with 1 degree variation


Despite Very Mild Start, November 2022 Fails to Rank Among 10 Mildest Novembers

 


Warm november 2022

 

Never before has the month of November started with such a sustained string of unseasonably mild days.  With an average high/low of 68°/55° the first twelve days were eleven degrees above average.  This included five days in the 70s and three days with lows in the 60s.  Ten of the days had highs of 66° or warmer (including three in a row with highs of 75°+). 

 

The month’s warmest high and low of 77° and 66°, respectively, were warmer than October’s warmest (76° and 61°).  The reading of 77° on 11/7 was the warmest in November in 19 years, while only Nov. 1, 1971 had a warmer low in November than this November's.  Five days were fifteen degrees or more above average.

 

Despite this record-warm start, the month was denied a spot among the 10 mildest Novembers.  This was due to an eight-day streak of unseasonably chilly conditions mid-month (11/14-11/21) that was seven degrees colder than average (high/low of 44°/34°).  This included the fall’s first low of 32° or colder on 11/19 (31°).  Overall, the month was 2.9 degrees above average and finished as the 13th mildest November on record (FYI, six of the top 10 are from this century).

 

Chart - mildest starts to november

The five days with highs in the 70s tied for fifth place for most in the month of November (November 1952 has the most - seven).  The three days with lows in the 60s were the most in November since 1975, which had four (the most).  However, November 2022 had five days with lows of 59° or milder -  the most of any November.

 

Another streak worth noting was one of eight days featuring sunny skies from 11/17 to 11/24; the last day fell on Thanksgiving Day.

 

The month’s rainfall of 3.15” was slightly below average.  This is the seventh time this amount has been reported as a monthly total.  The occurrence before this one was also in November, in 2013.  The month's rainiest day was 11/11, when 0.89" fell from the remnants of late-season hurricane Nicole.

 

The NYC Marathon on 11/6 had a high/low of 75°/66° making it the mildest of the races run in November (since 1986).

 

Although last November was 4.7 degrees colder than this November, this year's coldest reading was three degrees colder than November 2021 (27° vs. 30°).  Additionally, while November 2021 had 14 days that were five degrees or more below average, this year November had 14 that were five or more above average.

 

Here are November recaps from previous years:

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

 


October 2022 Weather Recap - Month's Overall Story Largely Determined In First 9 Days

 

Autumn 2022

Although it was just one degree chillier than average, October 2022 was the chilliest October since 2009.  This below average outcome was driven largely by the first nine days of the month, which were five degrees below average; the rest of the month was one degree above average.  Although the month was 1.0 degree below the 30-year average for October, it was 2.4 degrees cooler than Octobers since 2010 (and five degrees chillier than last October).

 

The month's rainfall of 5.08" made it the wettest month of the year (a low amount for this distinction since a year's wettest month  typically sees between seven and eight inches).  The last month with more precipitation was last October (5.26").  3.28" of the rain fell in the month's first five days (from the remnants of Hurricane Ian); then the rest of the month was drier than average.  The 1.85" of rain that fell on 10/4 tied 7/18 as the rainiest day of the year.

 

Despite the chill, the chilliest reading was just 42°; typically the chilliest reading is in the upper 30s.  Days with highs in the 70s occurred in three pairs: 10/6 & 10/7; 10/11 & 10/12; and 10/25 & 10/26.  10/6 had the warmest reading of the month, 76°.

 

Last fall, October had a record streak in the first half of the month, when 13 days in a row had lows in the 60s.  This October had only two lows this warm, and they didn't happen until 10/25 and 10/26.   

 

Finally, at the beginning of the month there were back-to-back days that were ten or more degrees chillier than average, and then there were two days in the closing week of the month that were ten or more degrees warmer than average.

  • Oct. 3:   53°/47°: 13 degrees below average
  • Oct. 4:   55°/46°: 11 degrees below average
  • Oct. 25: 70°/61°  11 degrees above average
  • Oct. 26: 72°/60°  12 degrees above average

 

Previous October recaps:

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

 

 

 

 

 


Friday the 13th Weather Highlights

 


Friday 13th

 

Friday the 13th appears on the calendar one to three times each year.  But despite the date's association with impending doom, the weather on this date has been a mixed bag of weather conditions.  Of the dates listed below, half had inclement conditions - but none cataclysmic in nature.  Therefore, from a weather perspective, there's no need to fear Friday the 13th more than the other days of the year.

 

Hottest: 95° (July 13, 1979)

Coldest: -1° (Feb. 13, 1914)

Rainiest: 2.61" (March 13, 1953)

Snowiest: 7.8" (Feb. 13, 1939)

 

September 13, 1889 

A dissipating hurricane stalled off the Delmarva Peninsula and brought bands of rain over the course of the past four days, amounting to 4.46", with much of it (3.34") falling yesterday and today.  Except for one hour this afternoon, the temperature was stuck in the 60s.  

 

August 13, 1909

The day's 0.81" of rain poured down between 10 AM and noon.

 

February 13, 1914

The morning low of -1° is the most frigid reading to occur on any Friday the 13th (in the years since 1900).  After dark, snow began falling and by midnight 1.6" had accumulated and the temperature rose to 26°.  This evening's snow was followed by 8.1" during the morning of the 14th.

 

January 13, 1939 

Beginning mid-afternoon, a snowfall of 8.8" (1.0" of it fell on 1/14) tied the Thanksgiving snowstorm of 11/24-25 as the biggest snowfall of the season.  It was also the most snow to fall on any Friday the 13th.

 

August 13, 1943

A strong thunderstorm dumped 0.80" of rain in less than an hour between 10:00 and 11:00 this morning.

 

March 13, 1953

The 2.61" of rain that fell during the morning made this the rainiest Friday the 13th in the years since 1900.  This rain was from a nor'easter that moved in yesterday afternoon (when 1.17" of rain fell).  The amount was a record for the date (broken in 2010 when 3.86" of rain fell). 

 

September 13, 1957

Today's high of 91° was the century's first reading in the 90s on a Friday the 13th (it would happen three more times: July 1962, August 1976 and July 1979).

 

April 13, 1962 

After going four years without a National League baseball team to call its own, the New York Mets played their first home opener, in unseasonably cold conditions, with a high/low of 43°/38° (nine degrees below average).  Windy and overcast, there were showers before daybreak and again late in the afternoon, amounting to 0.13".  As for the game, the Mets lost to the Pirates, 4-3.

 

November 13, 1970

A nor'easter produced 1.66" of rain that fell through early evening.

 

January 13, 1978

A nasty winter storm brought snow in the morning and early afternoon and an onslaught of sleet and rain after dark.  The ice and snow accumulated 3.0"; liquid precipitation amounted to one inch.  The temperature was at 32° or colder all day until after 10 PM when it rose to 33.°  (One week later 13.6" of snow would bury the City.)

 

July 13, 1979

The day's high was 95°, and with dew points during the afternoon in the the 73°-75° range, the heat index reached 106°

 

December 13, 1985 

A breeze out of the northeast, low clouds and periods of drizzle kept the temperature from moving much as just two degrees separated the high (40°) and low (38°).  

 

October 13, 1995 

Today's high hit 86°, twenty degrees above the average high for the middle of October.

 

February 13, 1998 

Today was the 30th day in a row with above-average temperatures - and 42nd out of the last 43 (beginning Jan. 2).  The mean temperature during this six-week period was nine degrees above average.  

 

May 13, 2005 

For the third day in a row the high was an unseasonably warm 86°, seventeen degrees above average.  

 

April 13, 2012 

Despite it being Friday the 13th, skies were clear, temperatures pleasant (low 60s, a few degrees above average), and the Yankees won their home opener, beating the Angels, 5-0.  However, from Yankee Stadium smoke could be seen in the distance, rising from a brush fire in Central Park as very low humidity posed a threat for brush fires throughout the area.

 

June 13, 2014 

Heavy showers moved through the area around 9 AM, and a severe thunderstorm struck between 5:45 and 7:30 PM.  In between, during the afternoon, the sun broke through for the first time in five days.  The 1.28" of rain that fell came one year after 1.26" fell on the same date.

 

February 13, 2015

Although the coldest low on Friday the 13th is -1°, set in February 1914, the coldest high temperature occurred today, when it was only 21° (the day's low was 8°; in 1914 the high was 26°)

 

April 13, 2018 

Today's high soared to 82° the day after the high reached 63° (which was the mildest reading in more than seven weeks).  This was eight days earlier than a year's typical first 80-degree reading.  And this morning's low of 60° was what the average high should be.

 

August 13, 2021

A sweltering high/low of 94°/78° produced the hottest mean temperature of any Friday the 13th (as mentioned earlier, July 13, 1979 has the hottest high temperature of any Friday the 13th - 95°). 

 


September 2022 Weather Recap: Largely Uneventful

 

September header

 

September 2022 had close to average temperatures (+0.3 degrees) and rainfall that was just slightly below average (4.10").   Through 9/22 temperatures were two degrees above average, but then the following eight days were four degrees cooler than average.  11 days had mean temperatures that were very close to average (i.e., between one degree below and one degree above average), the most of any month since September 2016.  The month's biggest daily rainfall, 1.11" on 9/25, poured down in a little less than an hour.  (Ironically, 9/25 is one of the least likely dates of the year to report measurable rain.)

 

The spread between the month's coolest (49° on 9/24) and hottest readings (90° on 9/4) was 41 degrees, the widest spread in September since 2015.   Although the hottest and chilliest readings were 20 days apart, the days with the most above average and most below average mean temperatures were just four days apart (9/19, with a high/low of 85°/68° was nine degrees above average; 9/23, with a high/low of 63°/51°, was ten degrees below average).

 

The 90° reading on 9/4 was the 25th reading of 90+ of the year, making 2022 the 20th year with 25 or more (all since 1936).  Of these years, 2022's hot readings were "coolest", with an average of 91.8° (0.1 degree cooler than 1959, which had 27 days in the 90s).

 

Finally, what was likely the last low of 70° this year  occurred on 9/5.  The last time this occurrence was so early was in 2014.  (FYI, a low in the 70s in October has occurred in nine years since 1869.)  In total, 2022 had 50 days with lows of 70+; only eleven other years have had more (the most was 61 in 1906, and 60 in 2005).  

 

Here are are weather recaps from eight previous Septembers:

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

   


Hurricanes & Tropical Storms That Affected New York Before 1970

 

Hurricane swirling clouds

 

Similar to tropical systems that have lashed NYC since 1970, the average frequency in the years before 1970 is once every two years.  What follows is a year-by-year listing of more than 50 pre-1970 hurricanes (as well as remnants of downgraded storms).  1954 stands out for having four tropical systems that affected the metro area.  At the other end of the spectrum, the 20 years between 1894 and 1914 saw just three tropical systems in total.  Please note that the first named storm to affect New York, Barbara, was in 1953.

 

1869

October 2-3 - Four inches of rain was produced by a hurricane that struck Cape Cod (1.84" fell on the 2nd, 2.16" on the 3rd).

1872

October 26 - The center of circulation from a dissipating hurricane got very close to Manhattan as it moved northeastward, dropping 1.56" of rain.

1874

September 29 – What was once the season's sixth hurricane moved over New York as a tropical storm, dropping 0.64" of rain on Central Park.  This was considerably less than the seven inches of rain that flooded the City from Sept. 16-18 from a non-tropical system.

1876

September 17 - Heavy rain from a minimal hurricane that raced inland through North Carolina and Virginia dumped 3.37" of rain in Central Park (a record for the date that still stands).

1877

October 4 - A dissipating tropical storm dumped 4.05" of rain in Central Park (a record for the date that still stands).

 

Heavy rain clip art2

 

1878

October 23 - The center of a dissipated hurricane and tropical storm, referred to as the "Gale of 1878", moved west of Manhattan.  Shortly after daybreak winds gusted over 50 mph, and 0.73" of rain was measured in Central Park.

1879

August 18 - 3.95" of rain flooded the City from a hurricane that struck North Carolina this morning and raced up the coast during the day.  This amount was a record for the date (a record that still stands).

1880

September 9-10 - Rain from a hurricane moving north from South Carolina started late on the 9th (0.67" of rain fell) and continued into the morning of the 10th (adding 0.54"). 

1882

September 11 - Rain from a tropical storm amounted to 3.23", with much of it (2.57") falling today.

September 23 - Less than two weeks after a tropical storm soaked the City, another tropical system brought more flooding rains to the Mid-Atlantic states, and drenched New York with its greatest rainfall for any calendar date - 8.28".  And in the preceding two days 3.52" of rain fell.  With a total of 16.85" of rain for the entirety of September (most of which fell between the 11th and 23rd), this was NYC's wettest month on record until Aug. 2011 when 18.95" was measured.

 

Heavy rain

1885

October 13 - A tropical storm moved northward through central Pennsylvania and dropped 1.50" of rain in Central Park. 

1886

June 23 - An early tropical storm passing to the south of New York dropped 1.20" of rain.  Cloud cover and rain kept the temperature in the 60s all day (the high/low was 66°/62°).

1888

August 21 - As it traveled just north of the City on its way to New England, the remnants of a category 3 hurricane that struck south Florida and later Louisianar soaked the City with 4.12" of rain (a record for the date that still stands).

1889

September 10-13 - A dissipating hurricane stalled off the Delmarva Peninsula and brought bands of rain over the course of four days, amounting to 4.46", with much of it (3.34") falling on the 12th and 13th.  Except for one hour during the afternoon of the 13th, the temperature was stuck in the 60s.  These four days were the start of a streak of nine days in a row with rain (and ten out of eleven); total rainfall during this period was around six inches.

1893

August 19-20 – A hurricane approached New York during the evening.  A peak gust of 85 mph was clocked and 3.81" of rain fell (1.34" today, and 2.34" on the 20th).

August 23 – Just four days after a hurricane lashed the City, a tropical storm passed to the west and dumped 3.61" of rain.

October 23 - A shield of heavy rain from a tropical storm that passed over the Delmarva Peninsula soaked the City with 2.46".

1903

September 16 - A category 1 hurricane made landfall on the Jersey shore in the morning, delivering a brief period of heavy rain to New York between 11 AM-2 PM; 1.63" was measured.

October 8-9, 1903 - A stalled hurricane (that weakened to tropical storm status), and a low-pressure system that formed along an approaching cold front, combined to create a tremendous rainstorm that produced 11.63" over 26 hours.  The deluge started late in the morning of the 8th (4.30" was measured) and continued thru mid-afternoon on the 9th (when 7.33" fell).  Rain fell at a rate of an inch every two hours for a large portion of the storm; at its most intense, 2.54" fell from 9-11 AM on the 9th.  At the time the rainfall on the storm's second day was New York's second greatest daily amount (behind 8.28” that fell 21 years earlier on Sept. 23); it's now ranked fourth.

1904

September 14-15 - After three weeks in which just 0.01" of rain fell, 3.84" poured down from a hurricane that crossed the eastern end of Long Island,and tore 19 barges from their moorings in New York Harbor.  The rain was split pretty evenly between the evening of 9/14 and the following morning.

1915

August 4 – What was the season’s first hurricane, which developed near Florida, brought 3.25” of rain (mostly between 6-10 AM) as it passed by New York City as a tropical storm.  A gust of 53 mph was clocked at Central Park.  Today’s amount of rain was a record for the date (which still stands).

1916

May 16-17 - The remnants of the year's first (and very early) tropical system produced a record amount of rain for the date (2.66"), with almost all of it falling after 4 PM.  And an additional 0.30" fell in the pre-dawn hours of the 17th. 

1924

August 25-26 - A dissipating hurricane southeast of Long Island, moving in the direction of Cape Cod, brought tropical storm-force winds and 3.03" of rain to New York.  Rain began the evening of the 25th and continued thru late morning on the 26th, with 2.29" measured (1.13" fell between midnight and 2 AM).

1925

December 1-5 – A large, meandering, extra-tropical system brought squalls and gusty winds over the course of five days.  2.76” of rain fell during this period, with the wettest day being 12/3, when 1.63” was measured (but none of the rain was torrential; the greatest two-hour totals were 0.41” from midnight-2 AM, and 0.36” between 8-10 PM.  Winds gusting to 35 mph were common on the 3rd and 4th.

1928

September 19-20 - Remnants of the Great Okeechobee Hurricane (which killed 2,500+ in central Florida on 9/17) dampened the City with 1.70" of rain; 1.29" fell on the 19th (showers fell throughout the day, with 0.58" falling between 10 AM-noon), and 0.41" fell in the wee hours of the 20th (with 0.29" falling between midnight-1 AM).

 

Lake okeechobee hurricane of 1928

 

1929

October 1-2 - The remnants of the season's second hurricane moved through eastern Pennsylvania, producing 2.55" of rain.  2.16" of it fell on 10/2, with most of it falling between 5 AM-3 PM.  This amount was a record for the date (which still stands). 

1930  

September 13-14 - A hurricane off the Outer Banks of North Carolina, pushed rain squalls into the area after 10 PM on the 13th that continued through the wee hours of the 14th.  The 0.75" that fell (0.56" of it on the 14th) comprised half of the rainfall of a dry September (at the time, the tenth driest September; now ranked 21st).  This was the smallest amount of rain from a tropical system since 0.73" fell on Oct. 23, 1878.

1932

September 16 - A weakening tropical storm to the southeast of Long Island brought showers.  And although it was just 0.68”, similar to the hurricane of Sept. 1930, it accounted for more than half of the month’s paltry rainfall (8th driest September; now ranked 15th).   This was the third September in a row with less than two inches of rain (then Sept. 1933 and 1934 would each have more than ten inches).

October 17-18 - Tropical moisture from a tropical storm that dissipated over West Virginia, produced 3.24” of rain, much of which fell between 9 PM on the 17th to daybreak on the 18th (2.58”).  The rain was also accompanied by tropical storm-force winds.  This was the most rain to fall from a tropical system since 3.25" fell on Aug. 4, 1915.

1933

August 23 - The remnants of a hurricane that made landfall on the North Carolina/Virginia border moved north through central PA and upstate NY, dumping 2.23” of rain in Central Park, with much of it falling between 4-10 PM.  (0.14” was added in the wee hours of 8/24).  This came on the heels of a coastal storm on 8/21-22, which produced 3.28” of rain.    

1934

June 19 - 1.91” of rain fell, mostly before 9 AM, as the remnants of a category 2 hurricane that made landfall in Louisiana three days earlier moved just to the southeast of the metro area.  This was a record amount of rain for the date (a record that still stands).

September 8 - The strongest hurricane of the season brought heavy rain to the City when it crossed over the eastern end of Long Island.  There were two periods of heavy rain, the first between 6-10 AM, when 1.23" fell, and then much heavier rain fell from 5-11 PM, when 3.26" poured down.  (An additional 0.37" fell at other times during the day, bringing the day's total rainfall to 4.86".)  During the early evening, winds gusted between 45-50 mph.  This hurricane came four days after remnants of a tropical system brought 0.68” on 9/3-4.

1935

September 6 - The remnants of what was the Great Labor Day hurricane in the Florida Keys (nearly 500 were killed) brought heavy rain this morning, with 1.60” measured between 2-10 AM (most of it fell between 4-8 AM).

1936

September 18 - After receiving just 0.08" of rain in the first two-and-a-half weeks of the month, a weakening hurricane to the southeast dumped nearly four inches, with most of it falling between 2 PM and midnight.  It was also a chilly day, with temperatures falling into the upper 50s during the afternoon. 

1938

September 21 - New York was spared the ravages of the history-making hurricane known as the Long Island Express, which made landfall mid-afternoon, 65 miles to the east.  Still, the City had to contend with near hurricane-force winds and four inches of rain, half of which fell between 1-4 PM.  Besides the wind and rain, it was also chilly, with the temperature dropping slowly all day, from the low-60s to low-50s.  Today's deluge followed two days of steady rain that amounted to 3.45".

 

1938 new england hurricane

 

1939

August 19 - The biggest rainfall of the year was produced by the remnants of the season's second hurricane, which made two landfalls in Florida, on the east coast and along the state's Panhandle.  The 2.31" that was measured fell between noon and midnight.  It fell heaviest after 8 PM, when more than half of the rain fell.  

1944

September 14 - "The Great Atlantic Hurricane" raced up the Mid-Atlantic coast and veered to the east of NYC (making landfall near East Hampton on Long Island), dumping 3.82" of rain between 4-11 PM, and lashing the City with gale force winds that gusted between 40 and 50 mph (and 70-80 mph at LaGuardia Airport).  Today's rainfall came on top of 3.94" that fell yesterday and 1.64" the day before for a three-day total of 9.40".  The New York metro area was the bullseye for the heaviest rainfall.

 

Great atlantic hurricane of 1944
 

October 20-21 - The remnants of the season’s 13th hurricane, that made landfall in North Carolina, produced 1.29” of rain between 7 PM-4 AM.

1950

August 19-20 - The season’s first hurricane brought two periods of heavy rain as it moved from Cape Hatteras to Cape Cod.  The first, from 11 AM-4 PM on the 19th saw 1.43”, with 1.04” of it falling between 1-2 PM.  Then, on the 20th, 1.46” was measured between 7 AM-3 PM, with 0.63” falling in the initial hour.  (However, this storm wouldn’t be as severe as Thanksgiving weekend's nor’easter three months later, which blasted the City with winds that gusted to 70 mph.)

1952

February 3-4 – The earliest tropical system on record brought 0.64” of rain late on 2/3 through the morning of 2/4.

September 1 – Remnants of the season’s first hurricane (which made landfall in South Carolina the day before) moved to the west of NYC and brought 1.17” of rain, with most of it falling between 10A-1PM.  This was a little more than half of the month’s total rainfall.

1953

August 14 - Twelve hours of rain from hurricane Barbara between 10 AM-10 PM measured 0.92”, which was almost half of the month’s total rainfall.

Barbara

1954

June 13 - 0.52” of rain fell between 3-7 AM (most of it between 4-5:00) from a tropical storm out in the Atlantic.  After skies cleared, the mercury rose into the upper 80s.

August 30-31 - Hurricane Carol made landfall on eastern Long Island (as a category 3) and brushed the City with gale force winds and 1.71" of rain, which began last night and continued today through late morning. 

September 11 - Less than two weeks after Hurricane Carol, Hurricane Edna made itself known (as it headed to Cape Cod), dumping 3.30" of rain (nearly twice as much as from Carol), with most of it falling in the twelve hours between midnight and noon.  This was the biggest rainfall of the year.

 

Torrential rain
 

October 15 - Powerful hurricane Hazel (category 4 when it made landfall in North Carolina) moved through Pennsylvania on its way to Ontario, Canada.  It brought minimal rain to the City (0.39” was measured, almost all of which fell between 6-7 PM), but winds gusted to 40 mph in Central Park, and 66 mph at La Guardia. 

1955

August 11-13 - Hurricane Connie flooded New York with 7.11" of rain over the course of 39 hours, with the first band of heavy rain moving through late on 8/11.  Although the most rain fell on the 11th (3.62"), the heaviest sustained period of rain would be on the 12th from 3-9 AM, when 2.50" poured down.  Rain was more of an issue than the wind, which gusted between 35-45 mph, well below hurricane force.  This was New York's biggest rainstorm since the Great Hurricane of Sept. 1944.  And while this ranks as one of Central Park's biggest rain totals, LaGuardia Airport picked up five inches more.

August 18-19 - One week after the flooding rains from hurricane Connie, another tropical system, Diane, affected the region, but compared to Connie, Diane moved relatively quickly.  The first band of heavy rain moved in late on the 18th, and by 9 AM on the 19th the rain was over; less than two inches fell, but significant flooding resulted since the ground was over-saturated from the large amounts of rain from Connie.  Sustained winds got no higher than 30 mph (but winds gusted to 54 mph at LaGuardia Airport).

1956

September 27 - Tropical storm Flossy, which was a few hundred miles to the southeast, brought tropical storm-force winds and a small amount of rain (0.21”) from 9 PM-midnight.

1959

June 2 - Remnants of Tropical Storm Arlene produced 1.09” of rain that fell from noon today until 2AM on the 3rd (0.90” fell from 4-11 PM).

July 10 – Remnants of Hurricane Cindy produced 0.50” of rain between 6 PM on 7/10 and 3AM on the following day.

1960

July 30 – Heavy rain produced by tropical storm Brenda, which moved over NYC, amounted to 3.56” during a 12-hour period between 1 AM and 1 PM.  This was the biggest rainstorm in five years (since Hurricane Connie).  At the time this was the second greatest daily rainfall amount in the month of July (it's now third).

September 12 - Rain and high winds from hurricane Donna, which moved just to the east of Manhattan, lashed the area during the morning through the first half of the afternoon.  2.36" of rain fell (heaviest between 11 AM and 2 PM) and winds gusted between 40-50 mph; at LaGuardia Airport winds gusted to 90 mph, and 3.63" of rain fell.

 

Umbrella blown inside out 

 

1961

September 15 – The downgraded hurricane Debbie moved just to the east of NYC, and produced rain for just a three-hour period between 7-10 AM (and only 0.32” was measured).  

Septmber 20-21 – Moving in during the evening of 9/20, what was once Hurricane Esther brought 1.28” of rain, 1.05” of it on the 21st.  Rain fell hardest between 2-4 AM and 10 AM-noon.  (Before it made landfall in North Carolina a few days earlier, Esther was briefly a category 5 storm.)  Tropical storm-force winds lashed the City at around daybreak.  The rain produced by the storm accounted for 75% of the month’s rain (1.70”).

1962

August 28-29, 1962Hurricane Alma brought rain that fell in three stages: in the pre-dawn hours of the morning of the 28th, when 1.35” fell (0.81” of it in a two-hour period), then lighter amounts after 7 PM through 8AM  on the 29th,  and then a mid-afternoon downpour (0.12”).  In total, 1.95” of rain was measured.


August 2022 Is New York's Third Hottest On Record

 

Hazy midtown

 

With an average high 86.9°/low of 71.7° (3.2 degrees above average) August 2022 ranks as NYC's third hottest August on record (behind August 1980 and August 2005).  The hottest temperature of the month, and entire year, was 97° on 8/9 (the last time it was this hot in August was in 2006).  This was one of eleven days in the 90s, which was well above the average of four.  This August was the 14th to have 10 or more days with highs of 90° or hotter (August 1980 has the most, with 15).  And its 22 days with lows of 70° or warmer was tied for second most behind 1980, 2005, and 2018, all which had 23.

 

Chart - 5 hottest augusts as of 2022
 
 

With 1.71" of rainfall, this was the driest August since 1995 (when just 0.18" was measured) and the  18th driest August overall.  The rainiest day was 8/1, when 0.48" fell.  (8/1 also had the month's coolest high, 77°).  The driest period of the month was the 15 days between 8/2-8/16 when just 0.30" of rain was measured.

 

August's coolest high temperature on 8/1 was followed by 10 consecutive days with highs of 87° or hotter, the longest such streak in ten years.  Six of the days were in the 90s, and the streak's average high was 91°.

 

The coolest low reading was 62° (on 8/18), making this the ninth August in a row in which there were no low temperatures in the 50s.  (The longest streak of lows in the 50s in August is 14 years between 1878 and 1891, and 13 years from 1915 to 1927).

 

There was a beautiful symmetry to the month's daily lows.  The month started and ended with lows in the upper 60s.  The following 11 days after 8/1 as well as the 11 days preceding 8/31 had lows in the 70s.  And the seven days in between the two streaks were all in the 60s.  One difference between the two streaks of lows in the 70s was that the earlier one was two degrees warmer (75° vs 73°).  Embedded in the first 11-day streak were seven days in a row with lows of 75° or warmer, the second longest such streak in August (after Aug. 1896), while the second streak had just one reading that warm.

Symmetry of August Lows

JULY-AUGUST

Last year July and August were noteworthy because both months had more than 10 inches of rain; this year it was their hot temperatures that gained attention.  July-Augusts 2022's average temperature tied with 2010 as the third hottest July-August combo (behind July-August 1980 and 2005).  The two months were also one of 12 pairs of months in which both had 10 or more days in the 90s (all pairs were July-August, except in 1966 when it was June-July).  Finally, this July and August combined for the most lows of 70+, at 46 (the average number is 29).

 

SUMMER RECAP

This summer was 8th hottest on record (June-July-August), joining four other summers from this century, including the hottest of all-time in 2010.  Although 2022's rank of average temperature (average of  the average high/low) was 8th, its ranking for average low was higher, at #4.

 

Chart - 10 hottest meteorological summers

 

MISCELLANEOUS

  • This August was the seventh month with 1.71" of rain.  The previous time was in May 1977.
  • Despite being third warmest for average temperature, Aug. 2022 ranks sixth for warmest high as well as sixth for warmest low.
  • With Aug. 2020 entering the top 10, it pushed Aug. 1955 out of the exclusive club.
  • Although July 2022 was 0.2 degrees hotter than Aug. 2022, July ranked as 13th hottest among all Julys.

 

Here are monthly recaps for past Augusts:

2021

2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

 

 

Aug 3 - jet skis on hudson