Today in New York Weather History: May 30
New York Weather History: May Highlights

Today in New York Weather History: May 31



Today's rainfall of 0.11" brought this spring's total rainfall to 4.95", making it the driest meteorological spring on record (a record that still stands).  And the month of June would continue these dry conditions, with just 1.32" measured. 


Today's high was 93° and was the seventh day in a row in which the high was warmer than the day before: 65° (May 25)-72°-74°-76°-77°-84°-88°-93° (today).


Line chart upward 


The biggest rainstorm of the year dumped 3.13" between 1-11 AM (two inches fell between 4-7 AM).  This was also a record for the date (which still stands).


Since May 28, more than five inches of rain fell, helping to make this the rainiest May on record (until May 1989 surpassed it by half an inch, 10.24" vs. 9.74").




On a sizzling-hot day that saw the temperature reach 93°, a mid-afternoon thunderstorm dumped 0.70" of rain in a 60-minute period between 3:50-4:50 PM.


Just like last year, it was a scorching hot day, with a high/low of 94°/76°.  (But unlike last year, there was no thunderstorm.)


For the third year in a row, the high was in the 90s on this date.  Today's high of 91° was also the first ninety-degree day of the year; thirty-one more would follow in the next eleven weeks (thru Aug. 15).


For the second year in a row, the year's first 70-degree low was on May 31 (the typical date is in early June).  However, this year the afternoon high of 82° was significantly cooler than last year's high.


This was the warmest May on record, 6.7 degrees above average.  From May 11 onward, temperatures were nine degrees warmer than average.  These three weeks had temperatures more comparable to the second half of June.  Ten days had highs of 85° or warmer (and three others had highs of 84°).  And today was no exception, as the high/low of 91°/71° was fourteen degrees hotter than the norm.  This was the fourth time in the past six years that the high on this date was in the 90s.




Half of the month's rain fell today as 1.99" of rain fell between 3 AM-7 PM, the biggest rainstorm since August of last year.  The rainy conditions and cloud cover resulted in just a two-degree difference in the day's high (61°) and low (59°).  Although the low was average for the date, the high was fourteen degrees below average.  This was the third day this year to have a two-degree diurnal temperature variation, the most of any year in the 1970-2020 period.   


Like last year, much of the month's meager rainfall (of 1.56") fell today as 0.90" was measured.


High temperatures during the past four days: 85°-84°-85°-84° (today).


This was the coolest May since 1967, and 0.8 degrees cooler than the chilly May of 1997.  Much of the month's 3.40" of rain fell since May 21, including today's 0.59".




The warmest temperature in May was 79° and it occurred not only today, but on 5/27 and 5/28 as well.  This was the last year (thru 2021) in which May's warmest reading failed to top 80° (on average, the warmest temperature in May is 88°).


Under sunny skies, it was a summery Memorial Day, with a high/low of 86°/69°, eleven degrees above average.  It was also the fifth year in a row with no rain on the holiday. 


The last day of the month was beautiful, with bright blue skies and warm temperatures (high/low of 79°/66°).  May had fourteen days with morning lows of 60° or warmer, the most since May 1991 (which was the mildest on record).  While May's average high temperature was one degree above average, the average low was four degrees warmer.




Today's high of 87° made this the eighteenth day in May with a high of 80° or warmer, a new record for the month (but no days were in the 90s).  It was also the seventh day in a row with a high of 85° or warmer.  During these days, highs averaged 86°, twelve degrees above average.  The month was the second warmest May on record, 0.2 degrees behind May 1991. 

Up until 4 PM it appeared this was going to be the first May since 1964 with less than an inch of rain, but then strong thunderstorms moved in and dumped 1.46" of rain - three times the amount that had fallen in the first 30 days of the month (0.40").  In fact, more rain fell in the 45 minutes between 4:00 and 4:45 (0.93") than had fallen in the previous 40 days. By midnight, the temperature had tumbled to 57°, 30 degrees colder than twelve hours earlier.


Sunny and warm with a high of 85°, the seventh day in a row with temperatures in the 80s.  This was in stark contrast to the first week of May, which was characterized by overcast skies and cool temperatures.  The average high that first week was 57° (12 degrees below average), while the average high during the last week of the month was 87° (13 degrees above average).


Today, Memorial Day, was the fourth day in a row with a low in the 40s, tying May 1884 for the latest streak of this many days.  (However, 1884's streak was chillier: 48°-43°-42°-48° vs. this year's 49°-47°-47°-49°.  










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also in 2016, a new May record was set as the final six days of the month all had lows of 68° or warmer, the only time the last six days of May ended this way. this topped a two-way tie of five such warm lows in May of 1991 (hottest ever) and 1880 (third hottest ever). the lows during these six days were (arranged in chronological order) 69°, 73°, 71°, 70°, 68°, 71°.

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