Monday April 16, 2012

April 16 sets record high

Updated:
9:30P.M. Monday April 16, 2012

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School Forecast For:
Monday through Friday
Two-Hour Delay Cancellation Early Dismissal
0% 0% 0%

Monday's Update

Just a brief update to note that the high temperature in Poughkeepsie made it up to 91 degrees this afternoon. This beat the previous record high of 89 degrees set in 2002.

The record high for the month of April is 94 degrees, set on April 17, 1976. However, it is likely that today's reading of 91 degrees was the earliest 90 degree reading for Poughkeepsie, beating the 1976's previous record by one day.

I'll have an update on the current drought on Thursday, and while it is still pretty early in the forecast, we could be looking at a widespread rainfall this upcoming weekend.

A fire weather watch is in effect again for tomorrow.
Try to avoid open flames.

More on Thursday.

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Sunday's Update
Dry, but pleasant weather continues across the region.

The latest forecast, has backed off on the rain threat for early this week, and now just indicates a 30% chance of showers this afternoon, and 20% Monday night. It should remain dry through at least Thursday night.

Temperatures will climb well into the 80's tomorrow, before moderating back into the 60s and 70's for the rest of the week. The current National Weather Service forecast actually has Poughkeepsie tying the April 16th record high of 89 degrees tomorrow. Poughkeepsie's rainfall deficit is now over 6 inches for the year, 4 inches for the season, and about 1.5 inches for the month.

I'll have an update on Thursday when the new drought evaluations are released.


Thursday's Update
The drought conditions that developed across the northeast in late March have intensified significantly over the past week.

Drought conditions in the northeast now extend from Maine through Maryland. Moderate drought conditions are now present throughout Ulster County and the mid Hudson Valley. Severe drought conditions have developed from Boston, Massachusetts through extreme southern Dutchess County, including most of Connecticut and all of Rhode Island.

The last time a drought of this size and intensity occurred across southern New York, and New England was in April 2002, and briefly in September of the same year. The last time any drought conditions were present in the Mid-Hudson Valley was in October 2010.

The reason for the lack of rain has been a persistent high pressure system that has been in place over much of the east coast since early February. The current drought is actually part of a much larger drought that extends along the entire east coast all the way through Florida and Alabama. With the exception of of small region around the Virgina/North Carolina border, the entire coastline from central Maine to Alabama, including the entire Florida peninsula is under some degree of drought.

The latest forecast from the National Weather Service does indicate the potential for some relief across the Mid-Hudson Valley in the form of a 30% to 40% chance of rain showers Sunday through Wednesday. However, it will b quite a while until precipitation figures are back up to normal values.

As of April 11, Poughkeepsie, New York has recorded the following precipitation values:

Since April 1:
0.26 inches, which represents a deficit of 1.15 inches, and 18% of normal.

Since March 1:
1.45 inches, which represents a deficit of 3.53 inches, and 29% of normal.

Since January 1:
5.06 inches, which represents a deficit of 5.66 inches, and 47% of normal.

Temperatures are expected to rise into the mid to upper 70's by Monday.

Figure 1: The extent of the drought one week ago.

Figure 2: The current extent of the drought.

Figure 3: The April 2002 drought at it's peak.

Aside from being the most significant drought in a decade, the current drought is even more noteworthy considering that just six months ago the region was dealing with record flooding from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee. The National Drought Mitigation Center releases their weekly evaluation of National Drought Conditions on Thursdays. US Drought Monitor Website.

Next Update
Sunday Afternoon

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