Is our September warmth unusual? - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Is our September warmth unusual?

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Blue colors show cooler than normal temperatures Blue colors show cooler than normal temperatures

After a cool July and a warming August, the first half of September has been very warm! We even had a heat wave that broke local record high temperatures three days in a row, but how 'normal' is this? Here are some facts I found interesting. We had 5 September records set in the year 1983 when we were just coming out of a strong El Nino. Highest September records sit at 95, 97, 99, and 101 for us. So, we've seen higher numbers.

For the 2nd half of the month which we began today, 10 of 15 records were in the 90s. Twenty four of September's thirty days have record years prior to 1995. Take out our 3 day record breaking heat wave this year and that leaves just 3 other days in the last two decades that broke record highs.

I found an article on icecap.us about Central Park, New York's record high of 97 on Tuesday Sept. 9th when we reached a record 93 at Westover Air Reserve Base in Chicopee. That is their one record September high temperature in recent years. Everything else for them falls prior to 1987 with many in the first half of the 20th century and a few records still stand from the late 1800s! Given this climatological history, perhaps we were due. 

I'll note that in the Septembers of 1953, 1983, 1991, and 2007, we had two days in a row that broke the record high. So, they've come in groups before. In that regard, not unusual.

The jet stream pattern now is flowing where it normally sits in July. We experienced a cool month due to a dip in the upper winds to the south. So, perhaps the weather pattern is just lagging by about 4-6 weeks. If that continues, we may see a late start to cold and snow if October acts like September and November acts like October, and so on. I've noticed this happens often. In fact, think back to the January-like cold in February and the late start to spring. Autumn chill is returning early next week and this time it may stick around longer.

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