Goodbye Spring!

Dorchester Beach, NB, 17 June 2018 (Dearing)

Spring had its inevitable ups and downs in Southeast New Brunswick but overall the average temperature was close to normal for March, April and May.

March was very stormy with a parade of Nor’easters which led to the highest snow depth of the winter in Greater Moncton by the end of the month.

April was slightly colder than normal with chilly nights until mid-month and the last measurable snow fell on the 21st.

May had slightly above normal temperatures overall thanks to 14 days with daytime highs of 20 C or more but nights remained cold with single digit lows.

So far this June, the mean temperature is running three degrees below average with a hard frost on the 4th which was the coldest minimum since 16 April.

METEOROLOGICAL SPRING at the Greater Moncton International Airport

MARCH 2018
Average -1.7 C (1.2 degrees ABOVE normal)
Snowfall: well above normal, Rainfall: well below normal

APRIL 2018
Average 3.2 C (0.3 degrees BELOW normal)
Snowfall: below normal, Rainfall: above normal

MAY 2018
Average 10.3 C (0.3 degrees ABOVE normal)
Rainfall: below normal, Snowfall: nil

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Tornadoes hit SW Ontario

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Trees uprooted by a tornado damage a home in Waterford, Norfolk County, ON, 13 June 2018 (OPP)


Two tornadoes have been confirmed in Haldimand, Norfolk and Oxford counties as severe thunderstorms rolled through Southwestern Ontario on 13 June.

Environment Canada says a tornado categorized as an EF-2 (Enhanced Fujita Scale 2) with maximum winds of 180 km/h ripped through the communities of Jarvis and Waterford uprooting trees, ripping shingles off buildings and destroying several barns.

Damage was reported intermittently along a path roughly 32 km long.

A second, less powerful twister categorized as an EF-0 struck near the town of Norwich around the same time and caused minimal damage.

Hot in the north!

It doesn’t feel tropical in northern Manitoba often but for the last couple of days Churchill on Hudson Bay has been one of the hottest places in Canada.

On Sunday, the thermometer climbed to 29.7 C which broke the old record high by 4 degrees.

It was even warmer on Monday when a new record of 32.2 C was set breaking the old high by almost 8 degrees.

The normal daytime high in Churchill for mid-June is 11 C.

A northerly surge in the jet stream and a high pressure system brought the tropical heat from the Gulf of Mexico.

The warmth will be short-lived with only single digit highs expected by Wednesday.

Risk of frost!

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Frost covers a maple leaf (Twitter)

New Brunswick and most of Nova Scotia are under a frost advisory for tonight and tomorrow night.

Cold air, light winds and few clouds will allow temperatures to fall near the freezing point and patchy frost is expected.

The average last frost date in spring for Greater Moncton is 23 May.

Farmers are already suffering from tremendous losses in the region with crops such as grapes, strawberries, blueberries and apples being hit by a recent hard frost with a low of -4 C in some areas.

June has gotten off to cold start with snow flurries reported in Charlottetown this week and accumulating snow in the highlands of Cape Breton and St. John’s, Newfoundland.

NB flood by numbers

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Flooding forces closure of Randolph Bridge on west side of Saint John, 05 May 2018 (Twitter/City of Saint John)

Some residents are still recovering from the historic spring flooding along the southern St. John River and its tributaries.

Flood levels were elevated between 27 April and 18 May affecting Fredericton, Saint John and areas in between.

By the numbers (provided by Government of New Brunswick):

  • 12,000 – properties affected by flooding to some degree
  • 2,627 – residents who registered for disaster financial assistance
  • 1,871 – residents who asked for health and safety inspection of properties
  • 1,110 – households registered with the Canadian Red Cross
  • 4,000 – tonnes of debris from flood dumped at landfills

Record lows in Maritimes

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We are now several weeks into the growing season and temperatures are dropping to dangerously cold lows.

Farmers are concerned about damage to crops after a cool air mass and clear skies led to a frigid low of -4 C in parts of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia overnight.

Greater Moncton dropped to -3.2 C early today which broke the old record of -2.2 C from 1903 and records go back to 1881.

The following new record lows were set on 04 June:

  • Kouchibouguac National Park, NB -3.8 C (records since 1924)
  • Grand Manan, NB -2.2 C (records since 1883)
  • Port Hawkesbury, NS -2.6 C (records since 1875)
  • Ingonish, NS -2.2 C (records since 1950)
  • Summerside, PEI -1.9 C (records since 1898)
  • Charlottetown, PEI -1.0 C (records since 1872)

Drastic cooldown

Temperature dropped below 10 C by early afternoon, 02 June 2018 (Dearing)

Unbelievable!  Conditions went from hot to cold in just a matter of hours after a cold front swept through New Brunswick today.

In Greater Moncton, the high of 18°C was set early this morning before the front changed the wind direction from south to north and the temperature dropped six degrees in an hour to 11°C by 9am.

This is in stark contrast to yesterday when the thermometer climbed to 29.7°C which was the warmest high so far this year.

New maximum records were set for 01 June in Bouctouche at 32.6°C, Miramichi at 32.7°C and 33.2°C at Kouchibouguac National Park.

May 2018 – Warm days, cold nights

Magnolia trees in bloom at Moncton City Hall, 16 May 2018 (Dearing)

While daytime highs were near or slightly above normal during May in Greater Moncton, overnight lows were chilly with frost and freezing temperatures throughout the month.

Fourteen days had highs of 20 C or more while eight days had lows near or slightly below freezing.

Precipitation was slightly below normal with most of the rainfall recorded during the first third of the month.

By mid-month, the landscape become more colourful as trees and bushes began to bloom and leaf out.

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

Average HIGH  18.1°C

Average LOW  2.5°C

AVERAGE  10.3°C (about 0.3 degrees ABOVE normal)

Extreme HIGH  27.8°C (31 May)

Extreme LOW  -2.0°C (12 May)

RAINFALL  82.5 mm (about 15 percent BELOW normal)

(Data courtesy Environment Canada)

Mini heat wave

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Thanks to high pressure and a jet stream surging north, New Brunswick will feel the heat over the next two days.

Greater Moncton is expecting a high of 30 C today and 31 C tomorrow with humidex values between 30 and 36.

Environment Canada says the warmest conditions will be from mid-afternoon to early evening and precautions should be taken in extreme heat.

The passing of a cold front this weekend will bring temperatures closer to normal.

TWN unveils summer forecast

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Spring has sputtered in New Brunswick – it was nowhere to be found in March, finally appeared in late April and although May has had a few warm days, the month is still running slightly below normal in Greater Moncton.

So what about summer?

In its seasonal forecast, the Weather Network believes a cool June should give way to more consistent warm weather during July and August.

A humid summer is expected which may result in warmer than normal temperatures at night – overnight lows average about 12 C.

While periods of dry weather are expected, heavy showers and thunderstorms should bring rain totals to near normal for the season.