Monday, June 10, 2013

The end of sub-90 weather and re-introducing "heat index"

UPDATE: As of 3:09pm, Memphis International Airport officially reached 91 degrees. Welcome to summer!

Ladies and gentlemen, appearing for the first time in 276 days, please welcome back to Memphis, TN - THE 90's!!

OK, so maybe you're not excited about it either, but today's forecast high of 91 at Memphis Int'l Airport will officially end our "90s drought" at 276 days and mark the latest initial occurrence of 90 degrees in Memphis in 10 years.  The last time it was June 10 before we hit 90 for the first time was 2003.

Memphis last reached 90+ on September 7th, or 276 days ago, when we topped out at 96. In fact, during that time span, September and February temperatures averaged very near "normal," while the typically colder months of December and January were above normal and the other months (October, November, March, April, and May) all averaged below normal. Overall, that ends up making for a rather nice 9-month period with a warmer than average winter and cooler than average spring!

Now that we're back to the 90s again, it'll definitely feel like a Memphis summer this week. No flirting with 90 for long - it's straight to the mid 90s and typical Memphis humidity for a few days at least.  Once again, we'll have to start including the dreaded Heat Index in the forecast once again as massive high pressure over the southern plains  impinges on the lower Mississippi Valley, squashing thunderstorm chances and allowing temps and humidity to rise. Remember that all official temperatures are taken in the shade and heat index readings are also for shady locations.  It can be as much as 5-15 degrees warmer in direct sunlight and as hot as 110 degrees or higher in airtight vehicles parked in the sun for as little as 20 minutes!

As we head towards the "dog days" of summer, be sure to re-visit these heat safety tips from MWN and check out the MWN Forecast to find out how long these 90s will last!

So are you glad to have the 90s back or are you dreading another hot Memphis summer?  Comment below or on our Facebook page!

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