BOSTON (CBS) – Since the start of July, we have had four tropical systems, five tornadoes (and counting) and more than 21 inches of rain in Boston (already the second most for July-August-September on record)
The rain just keeps on coming and the records just keep on falling. Just two days ago we wrapped up the third wettest meteorological summer ever recorded in Boston and in the two days since then, Boston has received more than 4 inches of rain. The ground is saturated. Rivers are swollen and cresting. We are just about at our breaking point.
Rain totals from Ida’s remnants show the jackpot locally was in southeastern Massachusetts. Several towns reported more than 6 inches of rain and New Bedford reported a whopping 9.5 inches in about 12 hours.
And we didn’t even get the worst of it. New York City experienced their first ever flash flood emergency overnight. Extraordinary rainfall rates between 3-to-6 inches per hour were measured in parts of New York and New Jersey. In fact, the 3 and 6 hour rainfall totals in the city are on the order of a 1 in 500 year event!
In the span of two months, New England has gone from concerns about drought to the exact opposite. At the end of June, Boston stood around 4 inches below the average for the year to date (and this came on the heels of a relatively dry year in 2020). Sixty some odd days later, Boston is now a foot above the average rainfall to date and nearing a tipping point.
We have already had more rainfall this year (as of September 2) than all of 2020. If another heavy rainfall event were to come through in the next 7-10 days, we would have major issues.
So what is next?
Looking out into the tropics, we find only Hurricane Larry. Larry is forecast to become a major hurricane by this weekend but thankfully appears to be no threat to land anywhere. Locally, we do have a few showers in the forecast Sunday and Monday, but these appear to be very light and isolated. Currently, models are not forecasting any significant rain through the middle of next week.
The weather story in the short term is a feel of fall for Labor Day Weekend. Lower humidity, highs in the 70s and cool (dare I say chilly) nights.
Are we done with the heat and humidity? I highly doubt it.
And we certainly can’t rule out more threats from the tropics. September and October are the peak months for tropical activity.
Forget that for now, let’s enjoy the holiday weekend and a quiet stretch, we’ve earned it.
Follow Terry on Twitter @TerryWBZ