The highest temperatures on record for many New England locations took place 39 years ago yesterday on August 2. With the exception of Boston’s 102 degrees, all of the other numbers listed here are all-time highs. It was a scorching 100-107 degrees at all of the beaches from ME to Cape Cod. You could only find relief in the ocean. Some people actually had to be rescued from beaches because the sand became so hot, it burned their feet! Several people succumbed to the heat in their cars attempting to get to the Cape in a traffic backup! We haven’t seen anything like this since and hopefully it will not be repeated for a long time to come! Contrast that with yesterday’s high temperatures in the upper 60s and 70s across the region. Boston’s high of 72 occurred just before 8 o’clock in the morning with 60s the rest of the day. The afternoon temperatures were more like those of early October! Aside from this weekend, most people agree with me that this summer has been the best in many years. Most of the weekends have been beautiful and summery temperatures have been on-going with episodes of alternating sticky weather and refreshing low humidity.
There have been only 4 days at 90 degrees or higher this season which is way below average. Last year, Boston had 18 such days which is 4 above the average. Furthermore, it is remarkable that there have been no heat waves yet. Looking ahead, there are no heat waves in sight! There were no days at 90 or higher last August but I suspect we’ll have at least a couple before this month is over. Looking at Boston’s mean monthly temperatures for 2014, the first 3 months were below average with January at -1.6 degrees, February -2.8, March a whopping -4.8 then a neutral April followed by the slightly above months of May +0.8 degrees, June+ 0.7 and July +0.7. Last July was a whopping 3.7 degrees above average! Based upon the myriad of global factors that create seasonal trends, it appears, presently, that after a probable warmer than average September, the early indicators are pointing to next winter having the potential to be more harsh than last winter with below to much below average temperatures and near to above average snowfall. With that said, it is too premature to be highly confident now but we’ll be watching the clues into the fall and present a winter forecast in November.
Back to the more immediate future, it looks like the gloomy weather will continue today as another weak wave of low pressure transits up the coast. It will produce some more light showers and sprinkles but a spell of moderate to heavy rain is not anticipated at this time. With the overcast and the showers, the temperatures will once again be about 10 degrees below the average for August 3. Expect highs in the upper 60s to lower 70s with perhaps a few middle 70s from north central MA northward where a bit of sunshine could break through the clouds. As the steering currents become more westerly tonight tomorrow, the frontal boundary will be pushed farther offshore resulting in more widespread sunshine breaking through. There is a risk of a few spotty showers and storms north and west of Boston in the afternoon with highs in the lower 80s except middle 70s at the beaches. Muggy weather will linger with some sunshine on Tuesday followed by some showers and storms from the next approaching upper level disturbance on Wednesday. Drier air will arrive on Thursday but a trough of low pressure will create afternoon clouds with perhaps a shower in a few spots. It now looks like much nicer weather next weekend with highs in the 80s.
As of 5am on this Sunday, Tropical Storm Bertha is centered about 40 miles south of Grand Turk Island. Maximum sustained winds are near 45 mph and some slow strengthening is expected over the next few days. The National Hurricane Center projected track takes Bertha up the shoot between the eastern seaboard and Bermuda. It is of interest but certainly no concern for us.
You can watch my weathercasts on WBZ News through 9 o’clock this morning then Eric Fisher takes over on the 6:30pm and 11pm shows.
Make it a great week!