July 2018 – Record heat!

Five Islands, Colchester County, NS, 24 July 2018 (Dearing)

July was definitely hot and often humid in Greater Moncton with Environment Canada confirming it was the warmest since 1940.

The average daily temperature was 21.4 C which is 2.6 degrees above normal.

An official heat wave in the first week was followed by numerous heat warnings being issued.

The thermometer climbed to 30 C or higher on 11 days during July and never dropped below 18 C during 7 overnights.

Rainfall was more than 30 percent below normal and much of the precipitation fell during thunderstorms.

JULY 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)

Average HIGH  27.8°C

Average LOW  14.8°C

AVERAGE  21.4°C (about 2.6 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  34.2°C (05 July)

Extreme LOW  8.7°C (13 July)

RAINFALL  63.0 mm (more than 30 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

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Northeastern Ontario burning

ON fire

Helicopter drops water on eastern flank of Parry Sound 33 fire, 30 July 2018 (Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources)

A forest fire in northeastern Ontario is edging dangerously close to the Trans Canada Highway which links the northern and southern parts of the province.

Known as Parry Sound 33, the fire has burned more than 100 square kilometres since it began on 18 July and smoke has been creating poor air quality.

Many small communities, south of Greater Sudbury, are either being evacuated or are on alert to leave at a moment’s notice.

More than 600 firefighters from across North America have arrived to help battle this blaze and dozens of others across the region.

Wildfires rage in California

CAfires

Wildfires burning in northern California, 29 July 2018 (Google Maps)

The largest of California’s wildfires has claimed five lives and destroyed more than 500 buildings near the city of Redding in the northern part of the state.

Fire officials say the blaze has grown in size to about 360 square kilometres thanks to hot, dry conditions and gusty winds.

Sparks from a vehicle ignited the fire on 23 July and now many of Redding’s 92,000 residents are on evacuation notice.

Further south, crews have made progress containing a wildfire outside Yosemite National Park but heavy smoke has closed the Yosemite Valley until next weekend.

Furnace Friday

HotUK

Forecast highs in the UK for 27 July 2018 (Met Office)

The British, like Canadians, often give names to extreme weather events and ‘Furnace Friday’ is a fine example.

Meteorologists were expecting the all-time heat record of 38.5 C from 2003 would fall yesterday but thunderstorms rolled through and cooled things down.

Nevertheless, the UK Met Office reports a maximum of 34.7 C at Tibenham Airfield, Norfolk while it reached 35.3 C in Faversham, Kent – the hottest high of 2018 so far.

The heat wave has turned grass brown, triggered water restrictions, disrupted rail services and prompted a warning from officials to stay out of the sun.

Hail Calgary!

CalgaryhailJul18

A sea of white – hail – on a Calgary highway, 23 July 2018 (Global/C. Bills)

It looked like a snowstorm in July as violent thunderstorms rolled across southern Alberta on Monday covering Calgary in golf ball-sized hail.

Traffic was snarled during the afternoon commute as drivers coped with hail piling up like snow.

By early evening, the storms had passed and Environment Canada dropped severe thunderstorm warnings for the region.

Calgary is dubbed the hailstorm capital of Canada and south central Alberta is known to be one of the worst areas of the world for thunderstorms producing damaging hail.

The heat returns!

Countryside near Victoria-by-the-Sea, PEI, 23 July 2018 (Dearing)

Another round of very warm temperatures and high humidity has enveloped almost all of the Maritimes with only New Brunswick’s Fundy coast exempt from an Environment Canada heat warning.

While actual daytime highs will approach 30 C, humidex values will range between 35 and 40 which can be dangerous for those at risk including young children, seniors and anyone with a chronic illness.

Forecasters say some relief may come on Thursday with some much needed rain but high humidity could persist until early next week.

Chris brushes eastern Newfoundland

ChrisTWN
Post-tropical storm Chris quickly moved across eastern Newfoundland late Thursday and early Friday with powerful winds, heavy rainfall and rough surf along the coast.

Gander recorded almost 80 mm of rain (almost a month’s worth), the southern Avalon Peninsula had high water swells of 6 to 8 metres above normal while Bonavista and Cape Pine recorded wind gusts above 100 km/h.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre issued its final bulletin for Chris early Friday as the storm sped off into the North Atlantic.

Chris heads for Avalon Peninsula

Chris2

Chris near Newfoundland, 19:30 ADT (courtesy Earth Nullhouse Net)

Chris is now a post-tropical storm with sustained winds of 110 km/h and is expected to make landfall in eastern Newfoundland near Cape St. Mary’s tonight.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre says strong winds combined with low pressure will create large waves and pounding surf giving the risk of coastal flooding along the southern Burin and Avalon Peninsulas.

Besides a wind warning, a rainfall warning has been issued with possible amounts of 50 mm or more and 20 mm an hour in the heaviest showers.

The remnants of Chris will drift away into the North Atlantic by early Friday morning.

Chris could pose threat

Chris

Atlantic Canada could feel an impact from Tropical Storm Chris which has formed off the coast of the Southeastern U.S.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre says the third named storm of 2018 will move northeastward and possibly strengthen to become a hurricane by early Wednesday.

The storm could weaken as it approaches Nova Scotia by Thursday.

The CHC notes there is still uncertainty in the forecast track and intensity of this system.

Beryl is the second named storm but first hurricane of the season and has been down downgraded to a tropical storm as it heads toward Puerto Rico.

Meantime, Environment Canada issued another heat warning for New Brunswick except the Fundy coast, Prince Edward Island and northern Nova Scotia as a warm, humid air mass pushes highs into the low 30s C with humidex values up to 38 on Monday.

Heat wave ends

rainjuly6

Thundershower as cold front sweeps Greater Moncton, 06 July 2018 (91.9 The Bend)

The passing of a cold front led to showers and thundershowers in Southeast New Brunswick today marking the end of hot, humid weather.

Environment Canada has noted Greater Moncton endured an official heat wave by definition with three straight days of at least 32°C.

The trio of record highs this week:

JULY 3rd : 31.6 C (new), 31.0 C (old record 1984)

JULY 4th : 33.4 C (new), 31.6 C (old record 2013)

JULY 5th : 34.2 C (new), 32.7 C (old record 2013)

The hotspot in New Brunswick on 05 July was a scorching 36.0 C at Miramichi and not far behind was 35.5 C at Kouchibouguac National Park.

As the heat subsides in Eastern Canada, hot weather is building in Western Canada with an impressive record high today of 39.3 C at Val Marie, Saskatchewan.