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A Sizzling Start to October

October picked up right where September left off! Thanks to a large area of high pressure located over the Southeast U.S., unusually hot (for October) and humid air set up over the Northeast during the first three days of October, setting all-time temperature records for the month at multiple locations.

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Five major climate sites had their all-time warmest October temperature on record on the 1st.

On October 1, five major climate sites - Huntington, Beckley, Elkins, Erie, and Harrisburg - had their hottest October day on record, with high temperatures in the upper 80s to mid-90s. In fact, it was the first time on record that Beckley and Elkins recorded a 90°F day during the month of October! It was also the latest day in the calendar year that either site had recorded a 90°F day. Binghamton had its second hottest October day, while Rochester and Charleston ranked the day among their ten hottest or the month.

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Another 10 major climate sites had their all-time warmest October temperature on record on the 2nd.

The following day, temperatures soared once again, approaching 100°F in some locations. This time, ten major climate sites had their hottest October day on record. Wilmington was one of the record-setting sites with a high of 98°F, besting its old record from October 5, 1941 by 4°F. Six other major climate sites ranked October 2 as their second hottest October day on record, with Harrisburg having its third hottest.

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Huntington, Beckley, and Elkins tied their hottest October days on record, which were just set on October 1.

October 3 was yet another day of record-setting temperatures in West Virginia. Huntington, Beckley, and Elkins all tied their record high temperatures for the month of October which were just set two days prior on October 1! Now both Beckley and Elkins have recorded two 90°F days in October for the first time on record. For Huntington, Beckley, and Elkins, October 1, 2, and 3, 2019, now rank as the three hottest October days on record.

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Erie and Beckley had their hottest October minimum temperature on record on the 1st.

Low temperatures were also unusually warm. On October 1, minimum temperatures ranked as the hottest on record for October in Erie and Beckley and among the three hottest for Rochester and Huntington. No hottest minimum temperature records for October were set or tied on October 2 or 3 but lows did rank among the ten hottest for nine sites.

The hot, dry weather over the past few days certainly didn’t help the drought conditions that southern parts of the region are dealing with. Severe drought was introduced in West Virginia this week. The last time the state experienced severe drought was fall 2010. A frontal system will work its way through the region Thursday and Friday, bringing relief from the heat and a chance of precipitation but also the risk of frost. Stay tuned for a blog about average dates of first frost!