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September 14, 2008

Record heat possible today


With a big, intense high pressure system to our south and east, pumping hot air up from the South, forecasters out at Sterling are looking for highs around 95 degrees in Baltimore this afternoon. If they're right, that could set a new record for the date and BWI.

UPDATE: The high today at BWI was 91 degrees, so no record was broken. Ninety-degree weather in September is not all that unusual. There were six days in the 90s in September 2007, and three days in October 2007. The hottest was 94 degrees on Oct. 9, which set a record for the date (as did the 91-degree reading the day before.) Previous post resumes below.

The high is the same one that steered Hurricane Ike across the Gulf into Texas, and then turned it toward the north, and now the northeast. The storm was just being swung around the southern, and then the western rim of the high's clockwise circulation. Now, the same system is carrying Ike's remnants north and east along the cold front at the top edge of the high, and across the Great Lakes. Looks like my mother-in-law in Erie, Pa. will get soaked. But not us. We won't be seeing a lot of rain tomorrow from Ike's remains as had been forecast late last week.

Instead, tomorrow we get partly sunny skies and highs in the 80s. There's no significant rain at all in the forecast  for the week ahead. The cold front that's due to drop past us tomorrow will send our daytime temperatures back into the 70s, actually a bit below normal for this time of year at BWI.

Until then we're in for a mid-September scorcher today. If we really do reach 95 today at BWI, it will break the 94-degree record set for the date 77 years ago - back in 1931. It's more than 15 degrees hotter than the long-term average for a Sept. 14.


Posted by Frank Roylance at 8:54 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Forecasts


I enjoy greatly your blog, and check it daily.
I do have one question: Why does the Baltimore Sun, and all its weather staff, use the word "normal" is describing phenomena such as temperature? Wouldn 't the word "average" be a better choice, since data quoted is from a 20-year running average?
Again, thank you for your blog.
M. Lofft-Judge

FR: All the Sun's "weather staff?" LOL. You must mean me. Anyway, you're right, in the sense that there is no "normal" - that is, "expected" weather. There are only "averages," and the daily readings will almost always be somewhere above or below those values, and almost never exactly on them. In my entries, and stories, I always try to stick to the term "average," or "long-term averages." But there are times when you need to vary your word choices. So when I use the word "normal," I mean it in its mathematical sense - that is, "an average," or "correspondance to a norm." I don't use it to suggest that anything hotter or colder, wetter or drier is "abnormal." And by the way, the averages we cite from the National Weather Service data refer to a 30-year average, which is not a "running average." It is reset once every decade. The current averages refer to the period from 1971 to 2000. In 2011, they will switch to the 1981-2010 averages. BTW, thank you for reading the blog. We have fun writing it, and hope readers enjoy reading it.

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About Frank Roylance
This site is the Maryland Weather archive. The current Maryland Weather blog can be found here.
Frank Roylance is a reporter for The Baltimore Sun. He came to Baltimore from New Bedford, Mass. in 1980 to join the old Evening Sun. He moved to the morning Sun when the papers merged in 1992, and has spent most of his time since covering science, including astronomy and the weather. One of The Baltimore Sun's first online Web logs, the Weather Blog debuted in October 2004. In June 2006 Frank also began writing comments on local weather and stargazing for The Baltimore Sun's print Weather Page. Frank also answers readers’ weather queries for the newspaper and the blog. Frank Roylance retired in October 2011. Maryland Weather is now being updated by members of The Baltimore Sun staff

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